Mr. Speaker, it is with a heavy heart that I rise in the House to express my most heartfelt condolences to the Portuguese people and the entire Portuguese-Canadian community, to which I belong, who suffer despite the distance.
Yesterday morning we woke up to a nightmarish tragedy. I can hardly imagine how devastated the families who lost 62 loved ones in that exceptionally fierce forest fire are feeling.
The European Union responded quickly with the moral and logistical support warranted by the situation. The diaspora is stepping up to provide support and assistance to all the villages that were destroyed.
I would ask my colleagues whose constituents include Portuguese-Canadians to reach out to them and offer some comfort.
Portugal will be a happy country once again, but for now, in the hearts of 16 million souls there is only fado and saudade.