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Canada's population, as of July 1, was recorded at 33,311,389, with the Prairie provinces and Prince Edward Island showing the fastest growth. Immigration accounted for an 91,600 increase in Canada's population during the second quarter of 2008, the largest increase in 17 years, according to a Statistics Canada report released Monday.

Statistics Canada's recent Ethnic Diversity Survey (EDS) suggests that as Canadian immigrants and their children grow older, their attachment to Canada strengthens. 74.5 per cent of respondents aged 65 and over expressed a "very strong" sense of belonging to Canada, compared with only 40.6 per cent among those aged 15-17.

After 3 years living in a Vancouver church, Amir Kazemian is free to stay in Canada, as his application has been approved by Citizenship and Immigration Canada on humanitarian and compassionate grounds. The welcome news reached Mr. Kazemian in the nick of time, as he was in police custody awaiting deportation.

Canada will be opening its doors to 2000 refugees of the Karen ethnic group, in a move announced by the Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration. Canada first accepted a group of 810 Karen in 2006 for resettlement.

There are more than 200,000 undocumented individuals, more commonly known as illegal immigrants, currently residing in Canada.

Most have integrated in Canadian society and contribute to our economy by working at jobs that would otherwise go unfilled. The problem is that they did not play by the rules in getting to Canada or if they did enter legally, they have since overstayed the date by which they should have left.

Hassan Samimifar is bitter, and it is hard to blame him for feeling that way.

Mr. Samimifar, an Iranian national, arrived in Canada 21 years ago and immediately applied for refugee status. Until 2003 he was waiting for an answer. When his file was finally addressed, his application was refused. After an immigration hearing scheduled for early December, Samimifar could be deported to Iran by early 2007.

Receiving the gift of a lifetime this holiday season, a family in the small town of Oliver in British Columbia?s Okanagan Valley facing a deportation order received a phone call from the Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of Public Safety, that they will be allowed to stay in Canada. .

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