After the USA, Zelensky is in Canada
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky continues his North American trip on Friday with a visit to Canada, which has supported him since the start of the Russian invasion. Late Thursday evening, President Zelensky landed from the United States in the Canadian capital Ottawa, where he was greeted by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who assured him of Canada’s “unwavering support” in his conflict against Russia.
Volodymyr Zelensky, accompanied by his Defense Minister Rustem Umerov, will meet the Governor General of Canada, Mary Simon, and deliver a speech to the Canadian Parliament. He then has to fly with Justin Trudeau to the metropolis of Toronto, where the two heads of state will meet business leaders and members of the Canadian-Ukrainian community.
Canada, the last G7 country the leader visited, has the second largest Ukrainian diaspora in the world after Russia, with about 1.4 million people of Ukrainian origin living on its territory. This is the first official visit of the Ukrainian president to Canadian soil since the Russian invasion began in February 2022. In March, Volodymyr Zelensky addressed Canadian parliamentarians via video conference.
“The Ukrainian people are the tip of the spear currently defining the future of the 21st century,” Prime Minister Trudeau said in a statement Thursday evening. He assured that Canada would remain by Ukraine’s side “as long as necessary” and that the country would continue to provide “unwavering support to the Ukrainian people fighting for their sovereignty and democracy.”
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Canada has provided more than $8.9 billion in support to Ukraine through a wide range of measures, “including $4.95 billion in direct financial support and more.” than $1.8 billion in military aid.”
Ottawa has also trained more than 36,000 Ukrainian soldiers and provided military assistance, including eight Leopard 2 main battle tanks, an armored recovery vehicle, 39 armored vehicles, anti-tank weapons, drones and satellite communications equipment.
Justin Trudeau visited Ukraine in June and notably announced that Ottawa would participate in a multinational effort to train Ukrainian fighter pilots.