On January 29th, 2017, six Muslims were murdered at the Islamic Cultural Centre of Quebec City, a mosque in the Sainte-Foy neighbourhood of Quebec City, Canada.
Six people were killed including Ibrahima Barry (aged 39), Mamadou Tanou Barry (aged 42), Khaled Belkacemi (aged 60), Aboubaker Thabti (aged 44), Abdelkrim Hassane (aged 41) and Azzedine Soufiane (aged 57)
Muslim Welfare Centre and Project Ramadan came to Ottawa on April 22nd to work in partnership with the Ottawa Food Bank to build over 100 food baskets with the help of local volunteers and city officials, including Mayor Jim Watson.
On November 25th, the Muslim Coordinating Council of the National Capital Region (MCC-NCR) organized a Unity Dinner at Sir John A. Macdonald Building for the leaders of Muslim community organizations. Over 310 Muslim leaders, people of diverse faiths, academics, government leaders and the media who attended the first joint dinner of Muslim organizations on Parliament Hill.
On October 19th, a vigil was organized by Somali community members in partnership with the office of the Minister for Citizenship, Immigration, and Refugees, Somali Canadian Ahmed Hussen, to mourn the victims of the recent terrorist attack in Mogadishu which has killed over 500 people, leaving hundreds more injured.
The annual Milad un Nabi (Birthday of the Prophet pbuh) returned to Parliament Hill on February 11th, after more than a decade of being hosted at other locations. Given the recent attack on the Hill on October 22nd, this was quite timely as a gesture of trust between Parliament and Ottawa’s Muslim communities. Conservative Member of Parliament and Chief Government Whip John Duncan hosted the event in Parliament’s Historic Railway Committee Room where the iconic “The Fathers of Confederation” painting hangs.
Back in Grade 5, I recall leafing through my new social studies textbook on the first week of school. My teacher at the time explained that that year, we would be learning about Canada and the history of the Canadian government. As I flipped through the pages, an image caught my eye. It was the floor plan of the House of Commons. Someone raised their hand to ask where the Prime Minister sat and our teacher pointed us to the legend describing which labels on the plan were which on the floor: Prime Minister, the Opposition, the Speaker, clerks...