The speaker of the Canadian Parliament resigned amid the scandal with the invitation of a SS Galicia veteran to Zelensky's speech: details
On Tuesday, September 26, the spokesperson for the lower house of the Canadian parliament, the House of Commons, Anthony Rota, announced his resignation. This follows a scandal over the invitation of 98-year-old SS Galicia Division veteran Yaroslav Hunko to a speech by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky last week.
Rota said this at a parliamentary meeting, according to media reports. In his brief statement, he thanked the parliamentarians for the trust by electing him Speaker of the House of Commons of Canada in both the previous and current convocations.
"It is with a heavy heart that I inform MPs of my resignation as Speaker of the House of Commons," Rota said without specifying the reasons for his decision.
The speaker was called on to resign by his colleagues and government officials after the scandal of inviting 98-year-old Yaroslav Hunko to parliament during President Zelensky's visit to Canada last week. Rota introduced Mr. Hunko as a World War II veteran who participated in battles against Soviet forces.
Later, journalists found out that Hunko served in the 14th Waffen-SS Grenadier Division, which was a volunteer unit composed mostly of ethnic Ukrainians and commanded by the Nazis.
The SS Division Galicia was formed by the German Armed Forces from among Ukrainians in 1943 to fight against the Red Army. Despite the Nuremberg trials and the creation of the so-called Deschene Commission in Canada in the 1980s, which did not confirm the division's participation in war crimes, the SS Galicia still faces accusations of carrying out Wehrmacht punitive operations against Poles and Jews.
The invitation of Yarosav Hunko to the Canadian Parliament caused outrage among Jewish organizations in Canada and Poland, which demanded explanations. The Speaker of the Canadian House of Commons then apologized for what happened but refused to resign.
As OBOZREVATEL previously reported, Canada has declared its long-term support for Ukraine. Over the next three years, Ottawa will provide Kyiv with 50 armored vehicles - combat and evacuation - and will train Ukrainian pilots on F-16 fighter jets.