BIt took four days for the leader of the House of Commons of Canada to finally submit his resignation this Tuesday, after having performed a controversial salute to a Nazi soldier during Volodymyr Zelensky’s visit to the country.
Anthony Rota submitted his resignation at the end of the meeting with the leaders of the different parties in the Canadian parliament, regretting the incident on Friday. “I reiterate my deep regret,” he said, quoted by the BBC.
The case broke out on Friday when, during the Ukrainian president’s visit to Canada, Rota pointed to the gallery and praised a “Ukrainian and Canadian hero”, which earned a standing ovation from everyone present (which included Zelensky and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau).
It didn’t take long for Jewish associations to discover that the exalted man in parliament was 98-year-old Yaroslav Hunka, who has ties to the Nazis and who, after all, had fought on the side of the Nazis during the Second World War.
MASSIVE OUTRAGE after Canada’s parliament gave a standing ovation during Zelensky joint address Friday to Yaroslav Hunka, a 98-year-old Ukrainian Nazi collaborator who served in a Nazi military unit during the Second World War implicated in the mass murder of Jews and others.… pic.twitter.com/PFWQNEoM76
— Simon Ateba (@simonstheba) September 24, 2023
According to the BBC, Hunka was part of the 14th grenadier division of the SS, the special forces of Nazi Germany, in a group of ethnic Ukrainian volunteers (remember that, at the time, Ukraine was a Soviet republic) under the command of the Germans. Studies have shown that members of the division were responsible for the deaths of Jews and Polish civilians.
Rota apologized for the mistake, but there was no turning back. Both from opposition parties, as well as from the government and deputies loyal to Trudeau’s party, there was no shortage of calls for the speaker’s resignation and removal from parliament.
“I think the speaker should listen to the members of the chamber and step aside. I don’t see an alternative”, concluded the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Melanie Joly, who considered the oversight as “completely unacceptable”. Which actually ended up happening.
Read Also: Government of Canada resigns politician who invited Nazi veteran
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