Libyan mission Canadian Forces to be honoured
Canadian Forces members who served in Libya are getting a special ceremony to honour them later this month, Defence Minister Peter MacKay said Wednesday.
The ceremony will be Nov. 24 on Parliament Hill and will honour Lieut. Gen. Charles Bouchard, who led the mission.
"We will be celebrating with those Canadian Forces members and their families here," MacKay said.
Asked why the government is holding a ceremony for troops who served in Libya but not Afghanistan, MacKay said Canadian Forces will be in Afghanistan until 2014.
"We're not finished our work in Afghanistan is the short answer," he said.
The House of Commons voted unanimously last March to send Canadian Forces to protect civilians in Libya, as part of a UN-sanctioned NATO mission.
A statement released from the Prime Minister's Office just before MacKay spoke, said Canada played a pivotal role in protecting people in Libya.
"On Nov. 24, I will join Canadians in paying tribute to the more than 2,000 brave men and women in uniform whose dedication, courage and professionalism helped Libyans put an end to 42 years of oppression at the hands of the Gaddafi regime," Stephen Harper said in the statement.
Interim Liberal Leader Bob Rae says he wasn't aware of all the details but says it's appropriate to recognize the work of the Canadian Forces.
"I think it's important to respect the work that our soldiers and our air force officers have done on the Libyan mission. I just think that we should be recognizing people for their courage and what they were prepared to do."