Mr. Speaker, I am dismayed by the accusations and innuendoes of the opposition parties about our mission in Afghanistan. It is time for them to stop using this mission for their own political purposes.
The situation in Afghanistan is far more complex than is generally understood. The government is taking a realistic, multidimensional approach.
We are supporting Canada's effort to save lives through de-mining operations, to improve quality of life through development, to bring hope through microcredit programs, to bring freedom through education, and to stabilize the country that has known only turmoil for so long.
We owe a debt of gratitude to our troops and to our development teams. They are carrying out this mission with honour, dedication and professionalism. They are enhancing Canada's reputation as a country that values freedom, democracy and human rights.
Under the Liberals the funding for this mission was set to decline annually until 2009. We must give credit to the Prime Minister for increasing the aid dollars, evidenced by an additional $200 million announced recently.