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Liberals Strengthen Bonds Across the Atlantic
Friday 17 March 2017 10:03

As Liberal International celebrates its 70th-anniversary this year it has had the pleasure to welcome a delegation of parliamentarians from the Liberal Party of Canada (LPC, LI full-member) to its headquarters in London for meetings led by LI Secretary General Emil Kirjas and LI Vice-President Robert Woodthorpe Browne MBE, with Liberal Democrats (LibDems, LI full-member) President Baroness Sal Brinton, Foreign Affairs Spokesman Tom Brake and Home Affairs spokesman Lord Brian Paddick.

Member of the Canadian Parliament Frank Baylis MP stressed on the added value of membership in Liberal Internaitonal saying:"I was very happy to have the opportunity to visit Liberal International and meet with British liberal colleagues and representatives from LI. The work that Liberal International does should not be underestimated. It is critical for liberal-minded politicians to have the opportunity to get together, collaborate, and learn from one another. This is how we will all make our world a better place."

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Alexandra Mendes MP echoed his comments by elaborating on the importance of maintaining strong liberal bonds saying: "Values in politics matter. Perhaps today more than before. We should not give up on our liberal values and win the support of the people. This was my personal story and the story of my Liberal Party of Canada that I enjoyed sharing at the meeting in Liberal International with the parliamentary colleagues, former minister and with the president from the UK Liberal Democrats." She further added: "It was encouraging to hear them energised as their fight based on our shared values brings increasing support."

Having with Robert W Browne MBE who is also a Chairman of the Liberal Democrats Federal International Relations Committee, Mendes found "excellent" tha the LibDems are "enshrining their internationalism and openness in the party structure" and reiterated that as parties the LPC and LibDems are very similar. "As a former party official I will certainly make that positive case at home" she concluded.

The Liberals agreed that an internationalist outlook and solidarity among Liberal parties around the world is essential in today’s age of divisive, populist politics. Part of the Canadian Liberal MP delegation were Greg Fergus, former LPC National Director, Dan Ruimy and Salma Zahid, while on the side of the Liberal Democrats the Rt Hon Sir Simon Hughes, former Minister of Justice and ex-LibDem Deputy Leader joined the meetings in London.

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199th Executive Committee
Johannesburg, 27-29 October
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