During a joint press briefing, the Canadian Prime Minister quickly turned his attention to Vladimir Putin, once again holding him responsible for war crimes.
” It is clear that Vladimir Putin is responsible for heinous war crimes. »
Canada, he added, will support Ukraine in its quest for justice and accountability.
Evoking a form of
recognition of the bravery and abilities of the Ukrainian peoplethe Prime Minister announced the gradual reopening of the Canadian Embassy in Kyiv.
Earlier in the day, he greeted Ambassador Larisa Galadza upon her arrival and witnessed the raising of the maple leaf flag over the Canadian Embassy.
Accompanied during this unexpected visit by the Minister of Finance, Chrystia Freeland, and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mélanie Joly, the Prime Minister also took the opportunity to announce an increase in Canadian aid to Ukraine.
On the military side, Ottawa will provide $50 million in additional aid. This last tranche of aid will include the sending of drone cameras, satellite imagery technology, ammunition and financial support for demining operations.
Justin Trudeau also announced the lifting of tariffs on Ukrainian imports and the payment of $25 million to the World Food Program to counter food insecurity in the country.
Asked whether this aid was coming late, the Ukrainian leader was content to say that time had been lost negotiating.
Volodymyr Zelensky nonetheless expressed his gratitude for Canada’s $1.5 billion aid, the largest after that of the United States.
In addition to these relief measures, Ottawa will impose sanctions against 40 other individuals and five Russian entities. According to the Prime Minister, this is
oligarchs, close associates of the regime and the defense sector, all complicit in Vladimir Putin’s war.
Other economic sanctions have also been telegraphed by Ottawa and its G7 allies. The leaders of the seven countries, who met by videoconference on Sunday, announced that they would ban or gradually reduce their imports of Russian oil.
” Putin made a serious miscalculation: he underestimated the resilience and courage of Ukrainians. »
This meeting, held as the world commemorates the Allied victory over Nazi Germany on May 8, 1945, was particularly symbolic in the eyes of Justin Trudeau.
The latter considers that it is
more important than ever to
stand up against Putin’s illegal war, defend democracy, human rights and international law.
” On this Victory in Europe anniversary day, Vladimir Putin shames the memory of the millions of Russians who fought and sacrificed to defeat fascism and secure freedom for Europe and the world. »
The Prime Minister claimed to have witnessed
all the brutality of Russian aggression during an earlier visit to Irpin, a suburb of Kyiv. The city had been the scene of particularly heavy fighting in March, when Russian forces tried to storm the capital.
He also went to Boucha, the scene of another massacre attributed to Russian forces.
A secret visit
For security reasons, the greatest secrecy surrounded the preparation of this visit. The media do not have access to certain places visited by Mr. Trudeau and his entourage. However, photos of the prime minister’s visit to Irpin were posted on Twitter by the city’s mayor.
This visit took place on the same day that Russian missiles pounded the port city of Odessa in the south of the country and heavy fighting took place in the east of the country, particularly around Kharkiv, the second largest city in Ukraine.
In March, Mr. Trudeau traveled to Warsaw, Poland, where he announced the application of sanctions against Russian oligarchs in the wake of punitive measures adopted after the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian army.
Several other heads of government have traveled to Ukraine in solidarity since the start of the conflict, including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Austrian Federal Chancellor Karl Nehammer, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen also visited the country.
The first lady of the United States, Jill Biden, also visited Ukraine unannounced on Sunday, saying she wanted to come on the occasion of Mother’s Day. She met her Ukrainian counterpart Olena Zelenska near the Slovakian border.