Friday August 6, 2010

Press Release


Chilliwack Recognizes Canadian Peacekeepers

Flag raising at City Hall




ational Peacekeepers' Day, on August 9, will be commemorated at Chilliwack City Hall with the raising of the Peacekeepers' Flag. The day honours and remembers all Canadian Peacekeepers who have served or are currently serving in support of peace around the world. The flag rising will be attended by veteran Chilliwack Peacekeepers and members of the Surrey Peacekeepers' Chapter, as well as Mayor Sharon Gaetz and members of Chilliwack City Council. Everyone is welcome to attend the short ceremony.

"August 9 is a significant date for Canadian Peacekeepers," said former Chilliwack Peacekeeper, Jim Harris. "In 1974, nine Canadian Peacekeepers were killed when their plane was shot down over Syria, making it the largest peacekeeping casualty in Canadian history."

Canada was involved in military observer missions in the late 1940s, particularly during the Arab-Israeli and the India-Pakistan conflicts. In the early fifties, Canada joined other UN nations to resist aggression during the Korean War. However, it wasn't until 1956 that the term peacekeeping entered the popular vocabulary, thanks to Lester B. Pearson.

Since Pearson approved the first UN peacekeeping mission in 1956, Canada has been a leader in keeping the peace around the world. Over the past two decades, Canada has deployed more than 2,500 police to 50 missions around the world.

While a peacekeeper's day has been taking place for several years, it wasn't until June 2008, that August 9 was officially recognized through legislation, as National Peacekeeper's Day. Ceremonies are held across Canada to recognize past and present peacekeepers, from the military and Canadian police forces who have served as Blue Berets on United Nations missions or in other NATO and coalition missions.

The Peacekeepers' flag raising will take place at 9 am on Monday, August 9 at the flag pole at Chilliwack City Hall.


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