Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Citizenship and Immigration Canada

July 10, 2009 15:34 ET

Minister Kenney Issues Statement Marking Imamat Day

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 10, 2009) - The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, issued the following statement regarding Imamat Day:

"Tomorrow is Imamat Day and I am pleased to join Canadian Ismailis, as well as Ismailis around the world, in marking the anniversary of the accession of His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan as Imam of the Shi'a Ismaili Muslims.

"The Aga Khan has now led the Ismaili Muslims for more than half a century. During those years he has exerted a profound influence both within and far beyond his community. Canada has greatly benefited from members of the Ismaili community who have made this country their home and who contribute to all aspects of Canadian life.

"The Government has a strong, long-standing relationship with the Aga Khan Foundation of Canada. This year marks the 26th anniversary of our collaboration. In Afghanistan, for example, the Foundation is a trusted partner of Canada in the effort to provide development, reconstruction and humanitarian assistance to ensure a brighter future for that country.

"Last month, His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan was granted honourary Canadian citizenship in recognition of what Prime Minister Harper described as his 'leadership as a champion of development, pluralism and tolerance around the world.'

"We are also honoured that His Highness inaugurated, last December, the new Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat in Ottawa, and that he is establishing the Aga Khan Museum and the Ismaili Centre in Toronto.

"The Government of Canada is also pleased to work in partnership with the Aga Khan on the Global Centre for Pluralism initiative. The Ottawa-based centre, located in the old Canadian War Museum building, aims to foster and promote values, policies, and practices that support the development of well-functioning pluralistic societies.

"As Prime Minister Harper has said, 'Pluralism is the principle that binds our diverse peoples together.'

"As Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, I extend sincere congratulations to His Highness Prince Karim Aga Khan on the 52nd anniversary of his accession as Imam. I encourage all Canadians to join in the Imamat Day celebrations and to learn more about the significant and remarkable contributions of the Aga Khan and the Canadian Ismaili community."

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