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1985 Air India Bombing 'Single Worst Terrorist Attack' in Canada's History, Says Trudeau

Air India Flight 182 disappeared from the radar off the coast of Ireland on June 23, 1985. A bomb planted on the plane in Canada in an act of terror exploded on board, killing all 329 people, including 280 Canadians.

PTI

Updated:June 24, 2018, 2:53 PM IST
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1985 Air India Bombing 'Single Worst Terrorist Attack' in Canada's History, Says Trudeau
File photo of Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Image: Reuters)
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Ottawa: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has described the 1985 Air India bombing as the “single worst terrorist attack” in the country’s history as he paid tributes to the 329 victims of the Kanishka Flight 182 which was blown off mid-air.

“On this day in 1985, Canadians awoke to news that defied belief, and left our country in a state of shock and suffering,” Trudeau said, marking the National Day of Remembrance for Victims of Terrorism in Canada.

Air India Flight 182, bound for London after picking up passengers in Toronto and Montreal, disappeared from the radar off the coast of Ireland on June 23, 1985. A bomb planted on the plane in Canada in an act of terror exploded on board, killing all 329 people, including 280 Canadians.

“The Air India bombing remains the single worst terrorist attack in Canada’s history. This horrific act of malice and destruction left families and friends grieving the loss of loved ones, and brought pain that will never completely go away,” the prime minister said.

“In times of tragedy and testing, Canadians have shown that the values which bring us together — inclusion, compassion, justice, and equality — are much stronger than the forces that try, and fail, to wedge us apart,” Trudeau said.

“Terrorists believe, through cowardly and violent acts, that they can make us question not only our safety, but the democratic institutions that keep us safe. They are wrong. Canadians are for facts and diversity, not fear and division. Our society thrives on inclusivity, and these acts only strengthen our resolve for unity,” Trudeau said.

He added, “Canada condemns all forms of terrorism. We stand in solidarity with our allies, and the international community, in the ongoing fight to prevent radicalisation and fight terrorism at home and abroad.”

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, I extend my condolences to everyone everywhere who has lost loved ones to terrorism. We also thank and honour those who work each day to keep our citizens, communities, and country safe,” he said, referring to several terror attacks across the world.

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan said only one person has been brought to justice and there are those who still walk free. “The investigation will not be completed until those have been brought to justice,” he said.

A British Columbia Supreme Court judge and a public inquiry later found that the bombings were carried out by the Babbar Khalsa, headed by former Burnaby mill worker Talwinder Singh Parmar. In British Columbia, Premier John Horgan paid tributes to the Kanishka victims as flags at the Parliament Buildings in Victoria flew at half-mast.

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