“I had the good fortune of getting to know the Aga Khan when I first met him as Canada’s Minister of Foreign Affairs. I soon came to admire his inspired and visionary thinking, which he advances as a part of a comprehensive and yet practical approach to addressing some of the world’s most complex and challenging problems. His constant emphasis on a compassionate, peaceful, and pluralistic conception of Islam in a world too often dominated by sectarian strife, is truly remarkable. I have come to consider him, not only the leader of the Shia Ismaili community, but also a rare figure in our world today.” — Bill Graham, see link to full piece below.

His Highness the Aga Khan’s visit to Western Canada

Map Western Canada

The Aga Khan in Calgary

1-Aga Khan Mawlana Hazar Imam goodbye Calgary

Mawlana Hazar Imam waves goodbye to Jamati leaders assembled at the Calgary airport at the conclusion of his Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada. Photo: The Ismaili/Arif Kassam.

VIDEOS

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The following video is in wide circulation on the social media

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TWEETS

MEDIA REPORTS

“My perspective on ethics, faith and how each of us contributes to cultivating a strong, sound society has been shaped by Mawlana Hazar Imam. Welcoming him to the city I love was a proud moment.” — Mayor Naheed Nenshi

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Alberta Lieutenant Governor Lois Mitchell and Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi greet Mawlana Hazar Imam upon his arrival in Calgary during his Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada. Photo: The Ismaili/Navroz Mitha

dsc_9615_Aga Khan greets Ismailis in Calgary

Mawlana Hazar Imam thanks Jamati representatives for coming out to greet him on his arrival in Calgary. Photo: The Ismaili/Navroz Mitha.

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The Aga Khan in Vancouver

May 7, 2018: Mawlana Hazar Imam departs Vancouver for Calgary

On the last day of his visit with the British Columbia Jamat,  Mawlana Hazar Imam conducted ceremonies at the Ismaili Centre in Burnaby, which he opened in 1985 with then Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney. Upon his departure, he remarked on the wonderful visit he had experienced and offered his congratulations to the Jamat. Mawlana Hazar Imam later departed Vancouver, arriving in Calgary where he will meet with the Jamats from the Edmonton and Prairies regions.

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Mawlana Hazar Imam meets with all of the officers who served in his police escort during his stay in Vancouver. Photo: The Ismaili/Aziz Ladha.

MEDIA REPORTS

Report and photos in The Ismaili: Mawlana Hazar Imam departs Vancouver

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May 5, 2018: Mawlana Hazar Imam meets with Jamat in Vancouver

CTV image Aga Khan visit in pictures

MEDIA REPORTS

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May 4, 2018: Mawlana Hazar Imam meets Premier of British Columbia

ad0_9774_0-20180504-Aga Khan meets BC Premier

Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, waves to his well wishers during his meeting with British Columbia Premier John Horgan (at right). Photo: The Ismaili/Aziz Dhamani.

VIDEO
(Recorded by an Ismaili bystander at a Vancouver hotel)

MEDIA REPORTS

Mawlana Hazar Imam arrives in Vancouver to begin his Western Canada visit

Lt Governor of BC and Mayor of Vancouver at YVR to receive Aga Khan

TWEETS BY: LT-GOV. OF BC, MAYOR OF VANCOUVER AND OTHERS

MEDIA REPORTS

img_9259_20180504-Mawlana Hazar Imam Aga Khan arrives in Vancouver

Mawlana Hazar Imam, accompanied by President Malik Talib of the Aga Khan Council for Canada, is greeted by Jamati leadership upon arriving in Vancouver on Friday May 4, 2018, for his Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada. Photo: The Ismaili/Asif Balesha.

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His Highness the Aga Khan in Ottawa

May 4, 2018: Mawlana Hazar Imam departs for Vancouver

moez_visram_20180504 Mawlana Hazar Imam Aga Khan departs Ottawa moe4013

Mawlana Hazar Imam is greeted by hundreds of Jamati leaders and institutional staff at the airport on his departure from Ottawa on May 4, 2018, after having completed several days of proceedings related to the work of the Aga Khan Development Network and Global Centre for Pluralism. Photo: The Ismaili/Moez Visram.

May 2, 2018: Mawlana Hazar Imam at Rideau Hall

Aga Khan with Governor Generals and Prime Ministers of Canada Featured Image

By ABDULMALIK MERCHANT

“Your Highness, we know, everybody in this crowd knows, that you lead by example, that the work that you’ve done tirelessly for six decades has been groundbreaking. We know that you are trying very hard to improve the quality of life of people in less fortunate places in the world, and that you promote tolerance and education above all.” — Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Rideau Hall, Ottawa, May 2, 2018.

Governor General with framed photo of Messsa and Jeddah from space for Aga Khan medium

Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, the Governor General of Canada, displays a framed photo of a night view from space of the cities of Mecca and Jeddah that she presented to His Highness the Aga Khan. Her Excellency is a renowned astronaut. She participated in two space flights to the International Space Station, in 1999 and 2009, and served as the chief astronaut for the Canadian Space Agency. Photo: Sgt. Johanie Maheu, Rideau Hall. See more photos at link below.

Invited guests started arriving at Rideau Hall, the residence of the Governor General of Canada, at 6pm for a dinner in honour of Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, who is visiting Canada for his Diamond Jubilee. The High Commissioner of Pakistan was one of the first to arrive on the scene. But several minutes before that, I saw a lone well dressed gentleman strolling the lovely grounds of Rideau Hall, enjoying every minute of his walk on an unusually warm day. I was having a hasty lunch at one of the benches when he passed me and little did I know that he had known Hazar Imam for over 30 years until I briefly spoke to him.

Rideau Hall Aga Khan event May 2, 2018

Ceremonial guards march to take guard at the main entrance of Rideau Hall. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant.

Former Governor General David Johnston

Former Governor General David Johnston strides towards his former residence, Rideau Hall, where he attended a dinner in honour of His Highness the Aga Khan hosted by his successor Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant.

Prime Minister Joe Clark

Former Canadian Prime Minister, Joe Clark, arrives at Rideau Hall to attend a dinner in honour of His Highness the Aga Khan hosted by Canada’s Governor General, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant.

I saw the arrival of some past presidents of the Aga Khan Ismaili Council for Canada  in chauffer driven cars; the NDP leader, Jagmeet Singh, looking elegant in his turban, arrived in a taxi. Joe Clark, former Prime Minister, was walking with his wife when I captured him in a photo from a short distance. The previous Governor General, David Johnston, whom Julie Payette succeeded last October, was proudly striding towards his former residence, when I took his photo.

Aga Khan arriving at Rideau Hall

Mawlana Hazar Imam arrives at Rideau Hall on May 2, 2018 for a dinner hosted in his honour by the Goverrnor General of Canada. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant.

Then at exactly 6:47 pm Mawlana Hazar Imam’s car with the flag of the Imamat took my attention away from everything else as it drove towards Rideau Hall. Princess Zahra was accompanying him.

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Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Audi bearing the flag of the Ismaili Imamat, parked at Rideau Hall, with cars of other dignitaries who attended a dinner at Rideau Hall on May 2, 2018. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant.

There was photo op but only with pool media and I did not qualify as an independent publisher. But I am glad I participated in my own little way to be at the grounds when Mawlana Hazar Imam arrived. That was a moment of happiness to witness, because in a few moments he would be received with grace and honour by the new Governor General, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau would arrive a few minutes later on foot but I had to leave the grounds as the main gates were about to close. The Prime Minister and his family reside at the grounds while his official residence on Sussex Drive, across the street, undergoes major repairs.

Rideau Hall

A view of Rideau Hall. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant.

“Thank you Canada. Thank you Canada for the advice, the support, the encouragement you’ve given to our institutions. I see Ismaili leaders from Canada … who are wonderful examples of Canadian knowledge, Canadian wisdom, Canadian comprehension, and who are building on the best of Canadian values. Thank you very much. Thank you.” – His Highness the Aga Khan, Rideau Hall, Ottawa, May 2, 2018.

dff_5603-Aga Khan Rideau Hall May 3, 2018

Mawlana Hazar Imam speaking at Rideau Hall where he was hosted by Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, on the occasion of his Diamond Jubilee. Photo: The Ismaili/Lisa Sakulensky. More photos in The Ismaili, see link below.

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A brief note on the night view photo of Mecca and Jeddah that was presented to His Highness the Aga Khan

Annotated photo

ISS016-E-16189_Mecca and Jeddah at night from the Space Annotated

The rapid growth in Jiddah and Mecca in Saudi Arabia can be mapped from the lighting patterns, and the road connecting them stands out as a bright string in the surrounding dark desert. Photo: NASA. Image ISS016-E-16189 was taken on December 11, 2007, with an 85 mm lens.

In addressing His Highness the Aga Khan at the dinner held in his honour on May 2, 2018 at Rideau Hall, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, a former astronaut, recounted an anecdote about a spaceflight in which she saw Mecca, alone amongst all other cities, gleaming brightly. She said that it was a beacon of light, ‘just as you are.’ She presented the Aga Khan with a photo of the night view of the cities of Mecca and Jiddah taken from the International Space Station (ISS). The photo desk at the Governor General’s office has informed us that the picture presented to the Aga Khan is a close up of NASA Image ISS026-E-028948. It is similar to another NASA Image ISS016-E-16189 that we have reproduced above (annotated) and below. We were not able to locate ISS026-E-028948 on the NASA website.

Astronauts circling the Earth on the ISS have the wonderful vantage point of observing the nighttime Earth from 350-400 kilometers above the surface, taking in whole regions at once. Onboard cameras and a bit of experimentation allow astronauts to take highly detailed images of our cities at night and share them with the rest of us.

ISS016-E-16189_Mecca and Jeddah at night from the Space

The cities of Jiddah and Mecca in Saudi Arabia and the well-lit road connecting them stands out as a bright string in the surrounding dark desert. Photo: NASA; Date taken: December 11, 2007; Time: 20:31:47 GMT. NASA Photo ID: ISS016-E-16189

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MEDIA REPORTS

HOUSE OF COMMONS REMARKS

Arif Virani Parkdale—High Park, ON

Mr. Speaker, yesterday members of all parties welcomed His Highness the Aga Khan at Rideau Hall to celebrate his diamond jubilee after 60 years as the religious leader of 15 million Ismaili Muslims around the world.

The Aga Khan has had a strong relationship with Canada for six decades, beginning with Canada’s decision to accept Ismaili refugees, like me and my family, who were fleeing persecution from Idi Amin.

Canada subsequently forged a strong working relationship with the Aga Khan Development Network, which provides critical humanitarian assistance in developing countries. Most recently, we bestowed honorary citizenship on the Aga Khan to recognize his commitment to the Canadian values of pluralism and diversity.

As an Ismaili Canadian member of the House of Commons, I am very proud of the Aga Khan’s commitment to community service, as illustrated by Canada 150, when Ismaili Muslims gave this country over one million hours of volunteer service.

I thank His Highness for being an example to us all. On behalf of the Parliament of Canada, we all wish him “diamond jubilee mubarak”.

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Erin O’Toole Durham, ON

Mr. Speaker, last night I joined three Governors General, three Prime Ministers from both sides of this chamber, parliamentarians, and prominent Canadians from the Ismaili community to celebrate the diamond jubilee for a special honorary Canadian, the Aga Khan.

For 60 years, this spiritual leader of the Ismaili community around the world has stood for tolerance and support for the most vulnerable. As Prime Minister Harper once said in this chamber, his leadership inspires us to hope for a better world.

This is also an opportunity to talk about the tremendous contribution of the 300,000*  Ismaili Canadians. They came to Canada with very little, but have given our country so much.

Today, I have the honour to thank the Aga Khan for 60 years of service and compassion around the world.

On behalf of the Conservative caucus and all parliamentarians, I want to thank the Aga Khan for 60 years of compassion, global leadership, and friendship with Canada.

*There are an estimated 120,000 Ismailis in Canada and not 300,000 as mentioned by Mr. O’Toole — ed.

TWEETS

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Governor General’s dinner for Mawlana Hazar Imam to be attended by Prime Minister Trudeau

Canada's 29th Governor General Julie Payette

Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette C.C., C.M.M., C.O.M., C.Q., C.D. Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada. Photo credit: Sgt Johanie Maheu, Rideau Hall © OSGG-BSGG, 2017

To mark the Diamond Jubilee of His Highness the Aga Khan as the 49th Hereditary Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, will host a dinner at Rideau Hall, on Wednesday, May 2, 2018.

This dinner will bring together a cross-section of Canadians who, over the last 60 years, have worked with the Aga Khan and his community, both in Canada and abroad.

A photo op with pool media will take place in the Reception Room at 7:15 p.m. Members of the pool media must be accredited with the Parliamentary Press Gallery and should arrive for 7 p.m. For more information on accreditation, contact the Parliamentary Press Gallery at 613-992-6517.

Itinerary for the Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, for Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Prime Minister Trudeau with Ismaili children

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau engages with Ismaili children during his visit to the Ismaili Centre in Toronto on March 21, 2018 on the occasion of Navroz, the Persian New Year. Photo: Barakah/Malik Merchant

Gatineau, Quebec

8:45 a.m. The Prime Minister will attend the Assembly of First Nations’ Special Chiefs Assembly on Federal Legislation and deliver remarks.

…….Other engagements……..

Ottawa, Ontario

7 p.m. The Prime Minister will attend a dinner given by Her Excellency The Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada, to mark the Diamond Jubilee of His Highness the Aga Khan as the 49th Hereditary Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims.

Location: Rideau Hall
1 Sussex Drive, Ottawa.

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May 1, 2018: Mawlana Hazar Imam arrives in Ottawa

Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, arrived in Ottawa, Canada’s capital city, on Tuesday May 1, 2018, to commence his second Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada in 6 months. He will stay in Ottawa until May 4, and then visit his Ismaili followers in Western Canada from May 5 to 11th in Vancouver and Calgary. The Ismailis of Eastern Canada were blessed with his visit last November in Toronto and Montreal. It is now the turn of tens of thousands of their brothers and sisters in Western Canada to cherish their time with their beloved Imam.

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Mawlana Hazar Imam is received by Ismaili Council for Canada President Malik Talib upon his arrival in Ottawa on May 1, 2018. Photo: The Ismaili/Moez Visram.

20180501zr1_edt1press_0346_Aga Khan welcomes by Canadian government leaders

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, together with Ambassador Marc-André Blanchard, the Permanent Representative of Canada to the United Nations, receives Mawlana Hazar Imam at Ottawa airport on May 1, 2018 at the start of his second Diamond Jubilee visit to Canada. Photo: The Ismaili/Zahur Ramji.

Ismaili Council for Canada-Aga Khan Arrives in Canada for Offici

Against a backdrop of the flags of Canada and the Ismaili Imamat, volunteer leaders of the Canadian Ismaili community greet Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, as he arrives on May 1, 2018 in Ottawa at the invitation of the Government of Canada. As part of the Diamond Jubilee,Mawlana Hazar Imam will also visit Vancouver and Calgary. Photo: AKDN/Zahur Ramji.

Our comprehensive coverage of Mawlana Hazar Imam’s visit will consist of our own exclusive reports and photos as well as links to articles that appear in the external media.

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Mawlana Hazar Imam, His Highness the Aga Khan, is welcomed to Canada by Jamati leaders upon his arrival in Ottawa on May 1, 2018. Photo: The Ismaili/Moez Visram.

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Aga Khan Diamond Jubilee: Pre-Arrival reports

ARTICLES AND REPORTS IN THE MEDIA

Former Prime Minister Jean Chrétien pens a great opinion piece on His Highness the Aga Khan in the Ottawa Citizen: Why the world celebrates the Aga Khan

Aga Khan and Prime Minister Jean Chretien Barakah

Former Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien welcoming His Highness the Aga Khan in February 2002 in Ottawa, Canada. Please see link to the Prime Minster’s piece published in the Ottawa Citizen on May 1, 2018, below. Photo: Website Archives, The Prime Minister of Canada

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Aga Khan’s historical photos with Canada’s Prime Ministers and Governor Generals

1983-aga khan-and Pierre Trudeau Silver Jubilee photo

This unique and historical photo signed by the late Canadian Prime Minister, Pierre Trudeau, was taken in the Prime Minister’s Office during Mawlana Hazar Imam’s Silver Jubilee visit to Canada in April 1983. (l to r) – Hon. Secretary Farouk Verjee (Aga Khan Council for Canada), Mr. Gerry Wilkinson (His Highness the Aga Khan’s Secretariat, Aiglemont, France), Hon. Secretary Mohamed Manji (Aga Khan Ontario Council), President Amirali Rhemtulla (Aga Khan Grants Council), Mawlana Hazar Imam, Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau, Prince Amyn Muhammad Aga Khan, President Mehboob Dhanani (Aga Khan Ontario Council) and President Zulficar Lalji (Aga Khan Council for Canada). The full signature line note from the Prime Minister read: To Farouk with the best of Memories. Trudeau. 1983. Photo: Farouk Verjee Collection, Vancouver.

Aga Khan and Brian Mulroney

Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and His Highness the Aga Khan during the opening of the Ismaili Jamatkhana and Centre in Burnaby, Canada, in September 1985. Photo: Gary Otte, AKDN.org.

Aga Khan and Jean Chretien

Prime Minister Jean Chretien welcoming His Highness the Aga Khan in February 2002 in Ottawa, Canada.. Photo: Website Archives, The Prime Minister of Canada.

Aga Khan with Paul Martin 2

Prime Minister Paul Martin with His Highness the Aga Khan.

“Conferring honourary citizenship upon His Highness the Aga Khan is a recognition of His Highness’s leadership as a champion of international development, pluralism and tolerance around the world and of his remarkable leadership as Imam of the worldwide Ismaili community.”  — Prime Minister Stephen E. Harper

Prime Minister Stephen Harper takes the occasion of the foundation ceremony of the Ismaili Centre, the Aga Khan Museum, Centre and their Park held in Toronto on May 30, 2010, to formally present the Aga Khan with the honorary citizenship of Canada. The Prime Minister said: “Welcome to our home and native land, your Highness. It is now and forever your home as well.” A motion introduced to the House to grant the Aga Khan with Honorary Citizienshi, and passed unanimously by all parties on June 10, 2009, recognized the exquisite symmetry between the Aga Khan’s values and Canadian values, and noted the Canada’s deep appreciation for the extraordinary contributions he was making to Canada and the world through the Delegation of the Ismaili Imamat, the Global Centre for Pluralism and the Aga Khan Museum. Photo: Website of the Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper takes the occasion of the foundation ceremony of the Ismaili Centre, the Aga Khan Museum, Centre and their Park held in Toronto on May 30, 2010, to formally present  His Highness the Aga Khan with the honorary citizenship of Canada. The Prime Minister said: “Welcome to our home and native land, your Highness. It is now and forever your home as well.” Photo: The Ismaili Canada, July 2010.

carisse-2016-0517_4689-Aga Khan and Justin Trudeau

His Highness the Aga Khan greets Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday, May 17, 2016, at the Office of the Prime Minister located at the Centre Block of Parliament Hill in Ottawa. Photo: Jean-Marc Carisee. Copyright.

Personifying cherished Canadian values, His Highness the Aga Khan has devoted his life to protecting the environment and alleviating human suffering due to poverty. Imam of the Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims since 1957, he has guided the spiritual growth of his followers, teaching compassion and tolerance by example. In 1967, he launched his foundation, the Aga Khan Development Network, with branches in countries around the world, including Canada. Recognizing our nation’s caring spirit, he cites Canada as a role model for the world and has selected Ottawa as the home of a new global centre for pluralism. — Citation, Honorary Companion of the Order of Canada,  Awarded on October 29, 2004; Invested on June 6, 2005

Aga Khan with Governor Generals Adrienn Clarkson, Michaëlle Jean and David Johnston

Top to bottom: His Highness the Aga Khan with Canada’s former Governor Generals Adrienne Clarkson, Michaëlle Jean and David Johnston. Photos: Sgt. Sgt Eric Jolin, MCpl Jean-Francois Neron, and Sgt. Serge Gouin, all Rideau Hall.

Date posted: April 27, 2018.
Last updated: May 12, 2018.

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This website, Barakah, is a special project by http://www.Simerg.com and is dedicated to the textual and visual celebration of His Highness the Aga Khan as he celebrates his Diamond Jubilee or 60 years of Imamat.

 

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