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PREMIER WYNNE’S REMARKS AT OTTAWA MOSQUE 

PREMIER KATHLEEN WYNNE: Thank you so much for welcoming me here. And I want to especially thank Imam [inaudible].  Thank you very much, thank you. And Yasir, thank you. I know it’s an extraordinary circumstance to have me standing here and I want to acknowledge that to all of you and to thank you very, very much. As we gather in this holy place today, my thoughts are with the mothers and the fathers, and the grandmothers and sisters, and brothers and partners and all of the families and friends of those who were murdered and who were injured in the attacks in Paris and Beirut last week. In Ontario, across Canada, and all around the world, we are saddened and we were shocked by these attacks on innocent people.

[Speaking French] In Ontario and all of Canada and the world we are saddened (inaudible) following these attacks against innocents.

We’ve all been touched, every single one of us have been touched by this tragedy directly or indirectly. And it’s our responsibility to support and pray for world leaders as they make decisions. It’s almost impossible for any of us not feel anger at this kind of violence. But it’s our responsibility as Canadian to make sure that we guard against the fear and that we resist blame that can lead to racism and to hatred. In these moments, it’s extremely important that we reinforce our Canadians values that are inclusive, that are based in compassion and that understand that as human beings we all want to find a way to live peacefully together. That is the Canadian value system. The reason I’m here today is that I know you share those values and I want to be here to say to you we are with you and we want make sure that all of the reasons that all of us came to this country because except for our aboriginal people every one of us came from somewhere else; some of us came six generation ago; some of us came six months ago; some of us came six days ago. But we all came from somewhere else to build a harmonious diverse society that values inclusion and compassion.  In my riding in Toronto, I was shocked to hear about the young Muslim mother who was viciously attack while she picking up her children from school. I had the opportunity meet with her last night. I went to her home; I sat with her and with her children and I could feel the fear that is in that household because she was attacked outside her school, her children’s school. She was punched, she was called a terrorist. She was told to go home. She was born in Toronto. She was born and raised in Toronto. So that kind of hatred is what we have to guard against right now at this moment in our history because you know and I know that hatred is not going to defeat hatred. Only love is going to defeat hatred. And so hard as it is, angry as we feel about the violence, we have to find a way to tap into that love, that compassion that makes us Canadian, that makes us who we are. So I want to just say to you that that is why being welcoming and open and inclusive, those Canadian values, that’s why Ontario was one of the first provinces to call for Canada to open its doors to Syrian refugees. That that humanitarian crisis calls on us to demonstrate who we are in the world. We remain committed to welcoming thousands of the refugees that our federal government has said that they will bring to Canada in the near future. We are in the process right now, Minister Naqvi is one of the members of our government who is engaged in making sure that we are ready to receive those refugees.

[Speaking In French] We remain determined to welcome thousands of refugees and are in solidarity with our federal counterpart, which is preparing to welcome refugees in the near future.

The attacks in Paris were an act of terrorists. They were not born of religion because religion has no place for hate. It has no place for hate. So that is why I wanted to come today. It is now more important than ever to show kindness and love to one another. I want to thank everyone in the Muslim community for your compassion, your openness, your immense contributions to our society. Thank you so much. [Inaudible] We will meet again in different circumstances.

 

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