Minister Cannon Showcases Afghanistan Mission E-Media Tools

(No. 74 - March 25, 2009) The Honourable Lawrence Cannon, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today presented a suite of e-media tools designed to give Canadians more information about Canada's mission in Afghanistan. The e-tools include downloadable videos and photos, an interactive map and social media sites. They are available at Canada's Engagement in Afghanistan.

"This government is committed to providing Canadians with accurate, up-to-date information on the country's important work in Afghanistan," said Minister Cannon. "I invite all Canadians to visit the website and learn about how Canada is improving the lives of Afghans and, alongside our international partners, contributing to strengthened global peace and security.

"With these new e-tools, and through interactive technology, Canadians can better understand Canada's role and priorities in Afghanistan," said Minister Cannon. "This is an important step in fulfilling one of the key recommendations of the Independent Panel on Canada's Future Role in Afghanistan: to provide the public with franker and more frequent reporting on events in Afghanistan and Canadian efforts there."

Since the release of the Independent Panel's report in January 2008, the Canada's Engagement in Afghanistan website has gone through a major overhaul, and its reach has expanded into the realm of new social media. Canadians are increasingly turning to the website for information on the mission. The multimedia products were developed to help inform Canadians on the country's military, diplomatic and development activities in Afghanistan, and to provide specific information on Canada's six priorities, as well as stories from the field, progress statistics and information on upcoming events.

The government's quarterly reports to Parliament on Canada's engagement in Afghanistan, the principal tool for reporting to Canadians on the mission's progress, are also available on the website.

In addition, the Focus Afghanistan e-newsletter, published by the Government of Canada, is available to Canadians by email subscription on the website.

- 30 -

For further information, media representatives may contact:

Natalie Sarafian
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs
613-995-1851

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-995-1874