Mr. Speaker, a disaster of unimaginable proportions struck Japan last night. An earthquake registering 8.9 on the Richter scale hit that country, triggering a tsunami with 10-metre high waves. Aftershocks were also felt, some measuring 6 or 7 on the scale. This is the most powerful earthquake on record in Japan and the fifth largest since earthquake data collection began. Reports are just starting to come in, but these events are causing consternation. The next few hours will certainly be critical for the victims.
My colleagues in the Bloc Québécois join me in expressing our solidarity and our empathy for the people of Japan, and anyone else who might be affected by the consequences of this earthquake. We will continue to monitor the situation closely in order to ensure that the government takes all the necessary measures to provide support and aid to the people in need. Our thoughts are with the people of Japan.