Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, and Prime Minister Harper in a conversation as they proceed to the signing ceremony of the protocol of understanding between the Ismaili Imamat and Canada in February 2014 when the 49th Ismaili Imam addressed the Canadian Parliament. They are flanked on either side by the flags of the red and green flags of the Ismaili Imamat and the maple leaf of Canada. Photo: Jean-Marc Carisse. Copyright.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper on March 21, 2015 issued the following statement on the celebration of Nowruz:
“Laureen and I would like to offer our best wishes to everyone celebrating Nowruz both here in Canada and around the world.
“Nowruz, or ‘new day,’ is a festival that has been celebrated for thousands of years by Persian, Kurdish, Central Asian and Ismaili communities. It marks the beginning of spring and a New Year, and is an opportunity to reflect upon the past year, recognize good fortune, and look to the year ahead with hope. Our Government shares your optimism for the future and will continue to work to help create a year of peace and prosperity for all Canadians.
“Nowruz traditions include a spring cleaning of the home, preparation of the haft-seen table, the gathering of families and friends to share meals and gifts, as well as musical and dance performances. In addition, shortly before Nowruz bonfires are lit and individuals recite a special phrase that helps to symbolically carry away the hardships of the past year with the flames.
“Nowruz is an opportunity for all Canadians to learn about the ancient Persian festival and recognize the important contributions of Iranian-Canadian, Central Asian and Ismaili communities to building a peaceful, pluralistic and prosperous Canada.
“On behalf of all Canadians, I wish everyone celebrating Nowruz a happy and healthy New Year.“Nowruzetan Pirouz!”
Source: Simerg com