The Viceregal Lion
  1. The Governor General of Canada
  2. Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette
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State Luncheon in Honour of His Majesty King Abdullah II ibn Al Hussein of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

Rideau Hall, Tuesday, August 29, 2017


I would like to take a moment to acknowledge that we are gathering on the traditional territory of the Algonquin people.

Your Majesty, it is an honour to welcome you and the entire Jordanian delegation to Rideau Hall and to Canada.

Or perhaps I should say welcome back!

This is your third such visit to Canada during your reign, and the second time Sharon and I have had the privilege of hosting you here.

We’re very pleased to reciprocate the warm welcome we received in Jordan during our visit last year.

One of the places we visited was the Zaatari Refugee Camp. There, people escaping conflict were making the best of their new home. I saw some kids playing soccer, so I kicked off my shoes and joined them.

This is what I learned about Jordan that day: despite the challenge of integrating so many refugees, Jordan is an island of hope for those seeking peace.

Despite the hardships, your country is giving kids a chance to play soccer, to have fun, to be safe.  

And I was also pleased to see the fruits of our collaboration in other spheres, how Canada is working with Jordan to deliver education, water, health care and more.

Good things come from working together in common cause.

Good things also come from encouraging stronger people-to-people ties.

As I’ve told you before, Your Majesty, one of my daughters, Jenifer, spent time volunteering in Jordan some years ago through an information and communications technology development program called NetCorps.

She learned a lot there, which is fitting considering how vital education is to both our nations.

Your visit to Canada helps to further encourage this sort of personal connection between Jordan and Canada. We can only become stronger through such interaction. In defence, security, development and trade, as well as arts and culture, we are making great strides, working together.

And there is so much more we can accomplish by diversifying our relationship and by continuing to partner bilaterally and in international fora such as the United Nations.

Your Majesty, I would like to thank you for being a friend to Canada. I look forward to continuing to expand on our relationship.