Russian Embassy to Raise With Canada Legal Reaction to Honoring Nazi Veteran

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 - Sputnik Africa, 1920, 29.09.2023
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Last Friday, Ukrainian Nazi veteran Yaroslav Hunka was given a standing ovation by the entire Canadian legislature. The honoring of Hunka happened as the then-House of Commons Speaker Anthony Rota was giving introductory remarks prior to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's address to the parliament.
The Russian Embassy will raise in contacts with Canadian authorities the topic of a legal reaction to the honoring of Ukrainian Nazi veteran Hunka in the House of Commons, Ambassador to Ottawa Oleg Stepanov told Sputnik on Thursday.
"Today, I am going to publicly ask the Canadian authorities about the future of this Hunka," Stepanov said. "Well, everyone understood that he was a former SS executioner, everyone now knows that he is a Canadian citizen and lives in Canada, everyone seemed to condemn him and half-apologized for his appearance in parliament. But what will be the next step of the Canadian government? Are they going to open, for example, an investigation into his possible crimes against humanity? Or will they all now let this scandal die and just quietly step aside? We, the embassy, ​​won't let this go down."
Stepanov underscored that he intends to raise this issue in their contacts with the Canadian side - particularly, what kind of legal reaction they will carry out in relation to Hunka.
The Russian ambassador has also announced that the Russian Embassy will send a note to the Canadian Foreign Ministry with an inquiry about Canada's legal steps regarding Ukrainian Nazi veteran Yaroslav Hunka, and will be awaiting Ottawa's reaction
At the same time, the Russian ambassador noted that Russia has no illusions about the prospects for the extradition of Hunka, as Canada will certainly drag out the process until his death.
"We understand, we do not have any illusions here, that this Hunka - even if the Poles, NATO allies of Canada demand extradition, if our relevant authorities also bring up the appropriate case and presentation for his extradition to Russia for his crimes against citizens of the USSR and citizens of Russia. Unfortunately, I’m sure that the Canadian authorities will launch such a long bureaucratic process that this 98-year-old SS-man will simply be allowed to quietly pass on to another world here. In order not to recognize his real crime on a legal level. This is unfortunately the reality of Canada today," Stepanov said.
The Ambassador also noted that for many years the Russian Foreign Ministry and the embassy have been working purposefully to bring the problem of these hidden Nazis in Canada to the surface.
"And all the changing Canadian cabinets, they all avoided interaction on this issue in every possible way," he said, providing the two examples of the Nazis in Canada, Vladimir Katriuk and Helmut Oberlander. both of who peacefully dies in Canada.

'Hostile siege'

Stepanov has also revealed that Russian diplomats in Canada perform their duties under a hostile siege by protesters, and the overall security situation remains tense.
"The security situation around the embassy remains tense," Stepanov said. "We are taking our own measures to protect our families, our children, but I would say that in comparison with the prosperous climate that the Canadian Embassy in Moscow enjoys, we are under such a hostile siege here."
Stepanov explained that every day since the beginning of the special military operation in Ukraine, they have been picketed, all sorts of ugly actions have been organized, protesters throw paint on the embassy fence and all sorts of offensive inscriptions on the poles.
"We are being bombarded from tennis guns with colored balls," the envoy added. "In general they behave very badly. We have a kindergarten operating on the territory of the embassy and we detect that some unidentified individuals are trying to take pictures of the faces of our children when minibuses arrive and leave the embassy. The situation is tense. The employees are all trained and competent."
Stepanov shared that the embassy is constantly engaged in the difficult dialogue with the Canadian side about the fact that the Canadian side must all comply with its obligations under the Vienna Convention and take more preventive and active measures to protect foreign diplomats on its territory
"In this context, I would like to note that we do not and never have had a permanent Canadian police presence near our embassy," he said. "That is, any attacker who would like to arrange something terrible is free in his actions. The police, as we calculated from previous incidents, arrive no earlier than three to 11 minutes. Three minutes is the best. And when I talked with my Canadian colleagues at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, I told them that any villain can commit an action and hide, because the police will arrive in 3-11 minutes, and then everyone will have to deal with the consequences later."

Hunka fund

Ambassador Stepanov has also said that the Canadian University of Alberta announced the closure of the research endowment fund bearing the name of Nazi veteran Hunka and his wife Margaret soon after the public address by the Russian Embassy in Canada.
"As a result of our work, the embassy discovered that Hunka and his family have an educational fund at the University of Alberta. But even after this scandal it continued to exist absolutely officially," Stepanov said. "Through our social networks, we drew the attention of the university management to this story and asked them to comment on how they felt about it. The result was not long in coming. Just a few hours later, this morning, the university publicly announced that it was closing the fund, returning the money, and expressed regret for any inconvenience or sadness that may have caused to anyone. The work of the embassy here turned out to be timely and correct."
Last Friday, a 98-year-old Ukrainian Nazi veteran Yaroslav Hunka, who fought in the ranks of the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the Nazi SS during World War II, was given a standing ovation by the entire Canadian legislature. The honoring of Hunka happened as the then-House of Commons Speaker Anthony Rota was giving introductory remarks prior to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's address to the Canadian parliament.