Canada pledges more military aid to Ukraine
AFP | Washington
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
Ukraine’s president met yesterday with close ally Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who pledged additional aid to the war-torn country, as Volodymyr Zelensky completed the third leg in a tour aimed at bolstering international support.
Zelensky, who landed late Thursday in Ottawa, earlier this week addressed the United Nations and stopped in Washington on Thursday for meetings with the US Congress and President Joe Biden, who pledged the imminent arrival of US tanks to boost Ukraine’s arsenal.
Canada is home to the world’s second largest Ukrainian diaspora and Zelensky, in a speech to parliament, expressed thanks for the backing given to Kyiv since Russian troops poured over the Ukrainian borders in February 2022.
“When we call on the world to support us, it is not just about an ordinary conflict,” he said, “It is about saving the lives of millions of people - literally our salvation.”
Canada, he said, has “always defended justice and I had no doubt that you would choose the side of freedom and justice when Russia launched a fullscale war against Ukraine.” “Thank you,” he said.
Zelensky concluded his remarks with an Indigenous word taught to him by Canada’s governor general, Mary Simon, that roughly translates to: “Don’t give up, stay strong against all odds.”
Trudeau vowed that he would continue to stand “strongly and unequivocally” with the pro-Western country, unveiling yesterday an additional Can$650 million over three years.
The pledge includes 50 armoured vehicles and training for F-16 fighter pilots, which comes on top of the $6.6 billion (Can$8.9 billion) in aid that Ottawa has already contributed.
“History will judge us on how we defend democratic values. And Ukraine is at the tip of the spear in this great challenge of the 21st century,” Trudeau told parliament.