Premier Rachel Notley issued the following statement acknowledging Alberta’s and Canada’s role as UN peacekeepers around the world:
“Today (May 29th), on the International Day of UN Peacekeepers, we honour 70 years of service and sacrifice. Since the first peacekeeping mission in 1948, men and women have put their lives at risk to protect the peace in areas of the world where conflict can deliver violence, destruction and death.
“We thank all Canadians—including many Albertans—who have worn the blue helmets of UN peacekeepers with pride, dignity, honour and compassion. Let’s be sure to recognize our neighbours who go abroad to serve, and their families who support them from home.
“Over the decades, their role has changed from monitoring cease-fires to protecting people and their rights, monitoring elections and helping women take their full place in political life and government. Sometimes, we take these things for granted. But in some parts of the world, only uniformed UN peacekeepers make them possible.
“Too often, peacekeeping comes at a terrible price. Over the years, more than 3,200 UN peacekeepers have paid with their lives. Today, we remember them and their cause, and vow to share their duty of supporting peace throughout the world.
“Peace is more than the absence of war. It is a diverse community working together and sharing in the common good. Albertans will keep standing with other Canadians for the cause of peace. Let’s continue to be a model to the world on how different cultures and peoples can live together in acceptance, harmony and partnership.
“And let’s all work towards building a world in which peacekeeping is no longer needed.”