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Statement by the Prime Minister marking two years since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine

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The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, today issued the following statement marking two years since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine:

“In the coming hours, we will mark two years since Vladimir Putin launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, escalating his war of aggression. In doing so, he unleashed unspeakable violence and brutality that has left hundreds of thousands dead and forced millions to flee. Putin’s invasion is not only a violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and independence, but also of the basic principles of the rules-based international order; an assault on our common humanity; and an attack against freedom, democracy, and peace.

“When Putin ordered his tanks across the Ukrainian border in 2022, he thought the world would stand by. He expected Kyiv would quickly fall. He believed the people of Ukraine would surrender. But his imperial delusions have been met with a fierce defence – and the Ukrainian flag still flies over Kyiv.

“Despite Russia’s unrelenting attacks, Ukraine continues to demonstrate unwavering courage. Ukrainians are fighting for their communities, their land, their identity, and their heritage. But they are also fighting for our collective future. They are fighting to remind the world that democracy is both important enough to die for and strong enough to win.

“As the war continues, that is what is at stake. And that is why Canada has stood with Ukraine since day one. Since 2022, we have committed over $9.7 billion to Ukraine, including $2.4 billion in military aid. We stepped up with Howitzers, Leopard 2 tanks, hundreds of thousands of rounds of ammunition, thermal clothing, body armour, and fuel. Under Operation UNIFIER, Canada has trained over 40,000 Ukrainian troops. Through billions in loans and hundreds of millions of dollars in humanitarian and development assistance, we are helping Ukraine rebuild and recover.

“Along with our international partners, we’ve imposed sweeping sanctions on the Russian regime and its enablers. Earlier today, we announced additional sanctions on Russia, including on 10 individuals and 153 entities, targeting Russia’s oligarchs and its war chest. This brings the total to over 2,400 sanctions since February 2022. We are also working with our international partners to secure long-term security commitments for Ukraine and ensure the safe return of Ukrainian children abducted by Russia.

“The friendship between Canada and Ukraine runs deep. Ukrainian immigrants arrived on our shores in 1891 and have since become an integral part of Canada’s social fabric. They’ve helped build the Canada we know and love. Today, Canada is proudly home to 1.3 million people of Ukrainian descent. Abandoning Ukraine in its time of need wouldn’t just be abandoning Ukrainians on the frontlines fighting for democracy, but also abandoning the culture and identity of Ukrainian Canadians here at home.

“If we fail to stop Russia’s advances, if we allow one despot’s invasion to embolden countless more aggressors, and if we allow Putin to redraw the map as he pleases, the world will look much different and much worse.

“This day serves as a reminder of what Ukraine is fighting for – the values of freedom, justice, and democracy. Canada’s support for Ukraine is unwavering and unequivocal. We will defend a future for Ukraine that’s written by Ukrainians. We will defend a Ukraine that stands strong and free. And we will be with Ukraine in this courageous fight for as long as it takes.

“Slava Ukraini.”