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Syrian refugees mark the one year anniversary of being welcomed to Canada


MONTREAL (NEWS1130) – It has been a year since Canada welcomed the first group of Syrians that the government flew out of refugee camps and political leaders are remembering the anniversary this weekend.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and some of his cabinet ministers were on hand Dec. 10, 2015 to greet the first plane load of refugees who arrived at Toronto’s Pearson airport.

A similar scene played out around the same time in Montreal and that occasion will be remembered today.

Federal Immigration Minister John McCallum and Quebec and municipal politicians will gather with Syrian refugees to mark the event.

Prime Minister Trudeau noted the anniversary on Twitter and federal Health Minister Jane Philpott, who joined Trudeau in welcoming the first plane load, noted the fond memories she had of that night in a tweet posted Saturday.

Images of Trudeau welcoming refugees as they put on winter clothing received extensive international coverage.

Although several hundred Syrians had arrived in the preceding weeks by commercial flights, the governing Liberals made the arrival of refugees by government planes a much-publicized event.

The refugees were among the 25,000 that the Liberals had promised to bring to Canada last winter.