Canada sending more tanks, ammo to Ukraine

Ottawa –

When Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced more weapons for Ukraine on Friday, rallies were taking place across the country to mark 365 days of death and violence since the Russian invasion began.

Prime Minister Trudeau said Canada will donate four more Leopard 2 main battle tanks to support the Ukrainian army, expanding Canada’s contribution to a total of eight tanks.

We also plan to donate an armored recovery vehicle and over 5,000 rounds of ammunition.

New sanctions have also been imposed on more than 200 people and entities that Prime Minister Trudeau said were complicit in the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.

This includes Russian Deputy Prime Ministers, ministers, members of the Russian Armed Forces and producers of artillery and weapons used in Ukraine. Also included are others who voted in favor of legislation related to attempted invasions and annexations of Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhia and Kherson regions.

The added aid comes on top of the $5 billion Canada had already pledged to help Ukraine after Russian President Vladimir Putin decided to invade the country a year ago.

“He is cowardly and weak. His brazen disregard for human life, his irresponsible rhetoric, his willingness to inflict horrific violence on innocent people may seem to know no bounds.” -Anniversary.

“But what is truly limitless is the courage and determination of those who fight for freedom every day.”

Meanwhile, just hours after Ottawa announced additional armaments, thousands of Canadians attended a series of rallies and stayed up all night alongside war-displaced Ukrainians.

Led by the Ukrainian-Canadian Parliament, about 40 ‘Fight Ukraine’ events were planned in major cities across the country, from St. John’s to Whitehorse.

During a rally in Halifax, the words of the added tank sparked loud applause from a crowd of about 200 gathered in the city’s central square next to City Hall.

Polina Kozlova, a 17-year-old refugee who fled the city of Kherson after it was occupied, said she came to the ceremony to remember the dead Ukrainians and show solidarity with her homeland, where her parents and brothers still live. . live.

“Despite the fact that it is very cold today, I feel warm in my heart and soul because I am with people, I hear their native language and songs, I feel the support from our country. because they are,” she said.

Hundreds braved the cold in Montreal to gather in Dorchester Square. People with Ukrainian flags and candles sang chants and songs to cheer their family and friends back home.

“For me, it was very important (to come here today) because I still have family and friends,” said Vlada Polischuk.

“I also went to Ukraine in November and saw with my own eyes what is happening there. increase”

Sebastien Bouffard said he has friends in Ukraine, talks to them every day and is aware of the devastation the country has endured over the past year.

“They sent me pictures and what Russia is doing is disgusting. Sometimes I cry when I see the pictures. I am 100 percent with Ukraine.”

In Toronto, over 1,000 people marched downtown and settled in front of City Hall. Many wore bright blue and yellow colors, with Ukrainian flags hanging and waving.

Ontario Prime Minister Doug Ford called Putin “no more than a tyrant” and a “villain”, and said his war had revealed the strength and resilience of Ukrainians.

Defense Minister Anita Anand said Canada began training Ukrainian forces in 2015 and has trained more than 35,000 people since then.

“We will continue. We now have trainers in England and Poland who are training members of the Ukrainian Armed Forces to help them fight and win this unjust and illegal war,” she told the crowd.

Simran Chawla, an international student who attended the rally, said, “I feel like Canada is getting the message that we must help those in need.”

Hundreds of people braved the cold outside the Alberta Legislature in Edmonton to mark the first anniversary of the Russian attack.

Many Ukrainian and Canadian supporters fleeing the violence raised the Ukrainian flag and watched speakers from the Ukrainian-Canadian parliament share their words of solidarity and hope.

“They gave us three days. Three days to break us,” said one of the speakers at the rally. “…365 days later, we are still standing. We are still standing strong.”

At a press conference in Kiev on Friday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky told reporters that with more weapons, the Ukrainian people could reclaim their territory.

“We are preparing.

The year-long conflict has dealt a deadly blow to the Ukrainian people, killing tens of thousands of civilians and displacing millions more from their homes.

Weapons and training from NATO countries and other allies allowed the Ukrainian army to retake thousands of square kilometers of territory.

— Using files from Michael Tatton from Halifax, Maricella Amador from Montreal, Tyler Griffin from Toronto, and Angela Amato from Edmonton

This report by the Canadian Press was first published on February 24, 2023.

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