Wed, Sep 12, 2007 - Page 5 News List

Sept. 11 brought Canada, Australia closer, Harper says

AFP , CANBERRA

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper told the Australian parliament yesterday on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks that terrorism had brought the countries closer together.

"The buildings may have been American, but the targets were every one of us," Harper said.

The assault on New York and Washington had been followed by attacks in places such as London, Madrid and Bali, where a total of 92 Australians were killed in two terror bombings.

"Canadians mourned your losses. We have redoubled our efforts to stand with you, because two dozen of our citizens died in New York on 9/11 and 70 Canadian soldiers and one of our diplomats have fallen in Afghanistan," Harper said.

"Both of our countries have been bloodied by terror and both of us are doing our part to confront and defeat it," he said.

Harper, the first Canadian prime minister to address both houses of the Australian parliament, likened the two countries to "strategic cousins." He said the warmth and friendship between the two former British colonies developed through shared values.

"The epic struggles of the 20th century against imperialism, fascism and communism pitted us against the common enemies that threatened our civilization," he said.

Harper arrived in Australia last week for the APEC summit.

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