The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement on Raoul Wallenberg Day in Canada:
“Today we pay tribute to Raoul Wallenberg, a remarkable hero whose courage and compassion rescued thousands of Hungarian Jews from persecution at the hands of fascist regimes during the Second World War.
“As a Swedish diplomat, Mr. Wallenberg provided many Jewish people living in Budapest with special ‘protective passports’ that saved them from deportation to concentration camps. He also created a network of safe havens, which operated under the Swedish flag. These safe houses, hospitals, and child care centres rescued many more lives and offered desperately-needed refuge to those fleeing persecution.
“Tragically, Raoul Wallenberg was captured by Soviet forces in the final stages of the war. His fate remains unknown, but his heroic achievements have since been celebrated internationally. Many awards, monuments, institutions, forests, and anti-racism campaigns have been named after him. In Canada, he was granted honourary citizenship in 1985, and a stamp was issued in his honour in 2013.
“On Raoul Wallenberg Day, I encourage all Canadians to join me in remembrance of Mr. Wallenberg’s courageous achievements and his great humanitarian legacy.”