Statement by Ontario PC Leader Doug Ford on the anniversary of Katyn Massacre and Smolensk Air Disaster

“As Leader of the Ontario PC Party, I join Ontario’s Polish Canadian community in commemorating the 78th anniversary of the Katyń Massacre which coincides with the 8th anniversary of the Smolensk Air Disaster.

“During the Spring of 1940, over 22,000 Poles perished in the mass executions that occurred throughout the Soviet Union. This dark time in the history of the world became known as the Katyń Massacre. We must always remember the lessons of this tragedy; the cost of divisiveness and the price of intolerance.

“Seventy years later, a plane filled with 96 Polish dignitaries travelling to pay their respects to the victims of the Katyń Massacre crashed in Smolensk, Russia. This disaster only compounded the existing grief felt by Polish community around the world.

“The Katyń Massacre marks a day of solemnity, it also marks a day to remember the tremendous sacrifices and contributions by the Polish community in the fight for freedom and democracy.

“Today, as we take time to reflect, I hope we can all be appreciative and thankful for our family and loved ones. Ontario embraces family, culture and diversity; the Polish diaspora is an important reflection of this, and as a province we will continue to stand up against acts of oppression and intolerance.

“On behalf of the Ontario PC Party; as we reflect upon today’s tragedies, and honour the victims’ legacies, I encourage all Ontarians to join in remembrance.”