Canadian PM Trudeau announces new weapons for Ukraine in visit to Kyiv
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced new weapons and equipment for Ukraine on Sunday after an unannounced visit to Kyiv, the capital.
Trudeau, addressing a news conference after talks with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, also said Canada was imposing new sanctions on Russian individuals and entities in connection with Moscow's invasion of Ukraine. Canada, he said, was reopening its embassy in Kyiv.
Trudeau said that Russian leader Vladimir Putin was responsible for "war crimes."
"It is clear that Vladimir Putin is responsible for heinous war crimes," Canadian PM said at a news conference with the Ukrainian leader, adding that "there must be accountability" and that he had "witnessed firsthand the brutality of Russia's illegal war."
Earlier during the day, Trudeau visited Irpin outside the capital of Ukraine, its mayor said, where Russian forces were accused of atrocities against civilians.
Irpin Mayor Oleksandr Markushyn posted pictures on an official social media channel with pictures of Trudeau writing that the Canadian prime minister "came to Irpin to see with his own eyes all the horror that the Russian occupiers had done to our city."
Trudeau's office confirmed the visit saying that, "The prime minister is in Ukraine to meet with President Zelensky and reaffirm Canada's unwavering support for the Ukrainian people."
Markushyn said that the Canadian prime minister had been given a tour of the suburb that was badly damaged by Russian forces in the early stages of their invasion launched in late February.
"He saw — not military facilities — but burned and completely destroyed homes of Irpin residents, who until recently enjoyed life and had their own plans for the future," the mayor said.
Several Western political leaders including UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres have recently visited Irpin and other residential areas around the capital Kyiv where Russian forces were accused of killing hundreds of civilians.
Trudeau's visit came on the same day US First Lady Jill Biden made an unannounced trip to Ukraine.
Trudeau was joined by Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland and Foreign Minister Melanie Joly, who together also hoisted the maple leaf flag at Canada's mission in Kyiv.
The embassy had been shuttered in February when diplomatic staff moved to Lviv and then to Poland. Joly this week had told reporters it would be reopened "in the coming days."
Later during the visit, Trudeau was scheduled to meet with Zelensky. Both were also to take part in an online G7 meeting to discuss the situation in Ukraine.