The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on Haiti’s Independence Day:
“Today, we join the people of Haiti and Haitian communities in Canada and around the world to celebrate Haiti’s Independence Day.
“On January 1, 1804, the people of Haiti overcame over a decade of revolts and three centuries of colonial rule to set the country on an independent path. With this historic victory, Haiti became the first country to be founded by former slaves, inspiring hope for other nations striving for freedom and independence.
“Today, Canada is home to over 165,000 Canadians of Haitian ancestry who are deeply woven into our cultural fabric and make our country a more prosperous, diverse, and inclusive place. As we prepare to mark 70 years of diplomatic relations this year, we look forward to continuing to strengthen the bonds between our countries and our peoples.
“Sadly, over the last year, Haiti has suffered from worsening humanitarian, security, and political crises. Canada is deeply concerned about the expansion of armed gangs and the resulting violence and instability, which is causing great suffering to the Haitian people. That is why we continue to work with the Caribbean Community and other international partners to support the efforts of Haitians to restore peace and security in the country, to meet the needs of its people, and to set a path toward a brighter and stronger future. Canada will continue to advocate for Haitian-led solutions to restore stability in Haiti.
“Today, as we extend our best wishes to everyone celebrating Haiti’s Independence Day, we recognize the Haitian people’s bravery and determination in the face of challenges. Canada stands with them as they work to build a better future.”