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Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaks during a news conference following the end of the G8 Summit in Brisbane, Australia Sunday Nov. 16, 2014. In his annual Christmas message, Harper asked Canadians to pray for troops who have been deployed to Iraq.Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press

Prime Minister Stephen Harper and his Liberal and NDP counterparts released Christmas greetings, with the Conservative leader calling for Canadians to pay tribute to soldiers fighting the Islamic State.

In a video message recorded and posted to his website, Mr. Harper echoed his party's political messaging in praising the state of Canada's economy, and saying Canadians "have many reasons to celebrate" during Christmas.

"We live in a beautiful country, a compassionate country, a prosperous country… around the world our country is also known for doing what is good and right, and for protecting the vulnerable, promoting peace, and defending the freedom of all people," Mr. Harper said. "Amid all the festivities, please say a prayer of thanks for the brave men and women in uniform, who serve this Christmas in harm's way, especially those fighting the terrorists of the so-called Islamic State. In our abundance, and in the spirit of Christmas, I'd also ask you to show kindness to the less fortunate."

Canada has dispatched roughly 600 Royal Canadian Air Force personnel help carry out airstrikes against the Islamic State in Iraq, though has not committed ground troops. The mission includes and CF-18 fighter jets, one Polaris refueling plane and two Aurora surveillance planes, and is due to wrap up in April, barring an extension.

Mr. Harper ended his 63-second-long video greeting with: "Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Season's Greetings."

In his own statement, NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair extended his wishes, saying Christmas is a time to renew work for peace.

"Christians around the world are joining together today to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, along with his message of unity and solidarity – a universal message that crosses borders and faiths." He said Christmas is a time to renew a push to "work together for peace, justice and to build a world free of oppression."

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau said in a statement that Christmas "inspires families and communities to come together, share what they have, and give back to those less fortunate. May we take this time to reflect on our many blessings, and remind our loved ones how much they mean to us."

Members of Parliament adjourned for the holidays on Dec. 12, and are due to return to Ottawa on January 26.