Volodymyr Zelensky met with Friday at Ottawa Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who promised to help his country at war “as long as it takes”, by announcing the sending of new military equipment to the United States. kyiv.
After the UN General Assembly and the White House earlier in the week, the Ukrainian president is completing a diplomatic tour from the Canadian capital intended to maintain the momentum of Western support for Kiev to face Russia.
Mr. Trudeau, at the head of a country which hosts a large Ukrainian diaspora, received the Ukrainian president in Ottawa in the morning with a hug, they held a bilateral meeting then spoke in front of the elected representatives of Parliament. /p>
Before Mr. Zelensky took the podium, Justin Trudeau announced a new aid package for Kiev worth 650 million Canadian dollars (452 million euros) over three years. It includes some 50 armored vehicles and the training of Ukrainian pilots in F-16 fighter jets.
“We will be at your side, alongside all the heroes of this courageous fight, for as long as it takes,” he said.
“History will judge us on way in which we defend democratic values. And Ukraine is at the forefront of this great question of the 21st century”, declared the Prime Minister between the woodwork of the House of Commons.
– “Until 'to victory” –
“Thank you,” Volodymyr Zelensky replied. “When we call on the world to support us, it is not about an ordinary conflict,” he told parliamentarians, “it is about saving millions of lives – it is truly our survival.”
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky (l) applauded by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and members of the Canadian Parliament, September 22, 2023 in Ottawa © POOL – Sean Kilpatrick
Canada “has always defended justice” , said the leader dressed in khaki military clothing, “and I had no doubt that you would choose the side of freedom and justice when Russia launched its war against Ukraine.”
“I hope that you will remain by our side until our victory,” Mr. Zelensky had earlier told the Canadian people.
With Justin Trudeau, he will then fly to Toronto, where the two leaders will meet business leaders and members of the Canadian-Ukrainian community.
This is the first official visit of Volodymyr Zelensky on Canadian soil since the start of the Russian invasion in February 2022.
Canada, the last G7 country to be visited by the Ukrainian leader, has the second largest Ukrainian diaspora in the world after Russia, with some 1.4 million people.
– 50 armored vehicles –
Before this new aid package, Canada had already committed, since the start of the war, to paying more than 8.9 billion Canadian dollars (6.2 billion euros) in support of Ukraine, including 1.8 billion in military aid.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky (l) greeted by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau at Parliament, September 22, 2023 in Ottawa © POOL – Sean Kilpatrick
The shipment announced Friday of some 50 armored vehicles is in addition to Previous announcements: eight Leopard 2 heavy combat tanks, one armored recovery vehicle, 39 armored vehicles, anti-tank weapons, drones and satellite communications equipment.
Thursday in Washington, President Zelensky thanked Joe Biden for American aid and pleaded for this support to continue, even after a year and a half of conflict.
American President Joe Biden (d) receives his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky in the Oval Office, at the White House, on September 21, 2023 in Washington © AFP – Jim WATSON
The American president, for his part, detailed a new military aid of 325 million US dollars and declared that American Abrams tanks would arrive in Ukraine “next week”.
The Ukrainian president also wanted to express his gratitude to the American Congress, which is currently debating the vote for a new aid package for his country, which some Trumpist elected officials do not want to hear about.
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