The Kremlin said Wednesday that a Ukrainian Nazi veteran inadvertently honoured in the Canadian parliament last week should be brought to justice and suggested that he be extradited.
The speaker of Canada’s parliament resigned following the incident, which saw lawmakers publicly applaud 98-year-old Ukrainian veteran Yaroslav Hunka who fought for the Nazis during World War II.
“Canadian authorities have a duty to bring to justice — or to extradite to those who wish to bring to justice — this criminal,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.
Poland said Tuesday it was looking at extraditing the veteran, and investigating whether Hunka — who fought for an SS unit — and was wanted for crimes against Poles or Polish Jews.
Russia has accused Ukraine’s leadership of harbouring Nazi elements, despite Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky being Jewish and losing family members in the Holocaust.
It has seized on the incident in the Canadian parliament.
“It is unequivocal that we are talking about a Nazi,” Peskov said.
Canada is home to the world’s second-largest Ukrainian diaspora.
Zelensky, who spoke to Canada’s parliament last week, expressed thanks for Ottawa’s backing since Moscow launched full-scale hostilities against Ukraine last year.