Trudeau blasts Russia, calls Nazi comparison in Ukraine ‘ridiculous’

By Cormac MacSweeney

Controversial comments from Russia’s foreign minister around Hitler and Ukraine is sparking fierce criticism from Canada’s prime minister.

In an interview with an Italian news channel, the Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov tried to justify his claims that Ukraine could have Nazi elements in its leadership, even if the country’s president is Jewish, by claiming Hitler had Jewish origins.

The comments has led to widespread condemnation.

“What the Russian foreign minister just said is unbelievable,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Monday.

“We need to stand, condemning ever stronger the ridiculous and unacceptable positions of Russia, even as we stand with Ukraine.”

However, Trudeau sidestepped questions about whether he would visit Kyiv, as other world leaders have done to show their support.

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The backlash comes as Ukraine’s ambassador-designate to Canada, Yulia Kovaliv tells a foreign affairs committee they need more military aid.

“We need heavy weapons. The list of the weapons is quite wide,” she said.

Kovaliv is also calling for Russia to be held accountable for using sex crimes as a weapon of war and wants Canada and allies to close loopholes around sanctions that have allowed some Russian oligarchs to avoid punishments.

Canada’s ambassador to NATO says any use of chemical or nuclear weapons in Ukraine would be a red line for allies and is very concerned about a possible escalation in the conflict.

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