_**Today, Rona Ambrose, Leader of the Official Opposition and interim Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, issued the following statement on Canada Day.**_ OTTAWA, ON – Today is Canada Day, a day to celebrate our great nation and to be thankful for the wonderful privilege of being Canadian citizens. Canada is the best country in the world – a place of liberty, strength, and acceptance. In the 149 years since Confederation, Canada has been a country of firm moral conviction on the world stage, and a place of boundless opportunity for those who call it home. We also take time on this day to recognize and honour our veterans and the women and men of the Canadian Armed Forces, as well as the families of those who serve. We thank them for their service to our country, for their bravery in the most dangerous parts of the globe, and for maintaining the safety and security we enjoy every day. This day, we join together to express our deepest gratitude for the opportunity to live in – and help build – a nation as proud as Canada. We know that many do not have the freedom and security that we sometimes take for granted as part of daily life. We Conservatives will continue to support Canada’s ability to help those who do not have the same fundamental rights that Canadians do. Far too many are still persecuted for their religious beliefs, for their heritage, or even for their gender. Canada must stand up for the rights of those who are the targets of hate and violence. That is why Conservatives are proud to stand up for freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law around the world. And to our fellow citizens, our neighbours, and our loved ones, let us continue to share with each other that Canadian spirit of goodwill and friendship. We Canadians are at our best when given the opportunity to help those around us. This was never clearer than this year, when the terrible fires of Fort McMurray devastated that proud community. Yet Canadians rallied for Fort Mac, and we know it is already preparing to emerge stronger than ever with the support for a nation behind it. I urge you to take the time today to be with family and friends, and to celebrate the wonderful country we all share. From my family to yours, I wish you a safe and happy Canada Day.