The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, issued the following statement on December 22, 2019, to mark the start of Hanukkah:
“At sunset today, Jewish communities in Canada and around the world will welcome the beginning of Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights.
Over the next eight nights, families and friends will gather to light the candles of the chanukiah, one by one, as a reminder that light always triumphs over darkness. Together, people will pray, sing, and share stories of hope as they commemorate the miracle at the Holy Temple in Jerusalem.
Hanukkah is an opportunity to reflect on life’s blessings and honour the resilience of the Jewish people in the face of immense adversity. It is also a time to recognize the challenges still experienced by Jewish communities today, including unacceptable acts of antisemitism. Such hatred, whether it happens on university campuses or anywhere else, has no place in our country or our world, and we will always condemn it.
Today, as we recognize the significant contributions that Jewish Canadians make to our communities, we recommit ourselves to speaking up against antisemitism wherever it occurs. Together, we can continue to build a country where we celebrate the diversity, compassion, and inclusion that are Canada’s strength.
On behalf of all Canadians, Sophie and I wish everyone celebrating a blessed and peaceful Hanukkah.
Chag Hanukkah Sameach.”