Former Nazi soldier in the Commons | University of Alberta returns donation in name of Yaroslav Hunka

(Ottawa) A $30,000 endowment fund bearing the name of Yaroslav Hunka, the former Nazi soldier who was applauded in the House of Commons, has been returned by the University of Alberta.

The university establishment looked into this endowment fund in the wake of the scandal which erupted in recent days, when it was learned that the veteran had fought in a Nazi unit during the Second World War.

“After carefully considering the complexities, experiences and circumstances of those affected by this situation, we have made the decision to dissolve the endowment fund and return the funds to the donor,” Verna Yiu, interim provost and vice president, said Thursday. -president of the institution.

“The university recognizes and regrets the unintentional harm caused,” she said in this press release in French

Yaroslav Hunka’s family made the payment to the university’s Canadian Institute for Ukrainian Studies in 2019, and named it in honor of the 98-year-old veteran. In light of this affair, we wish to review the “general policies and procedures for assigning names”, indicated Yiu.

On behalf of the university, I want to express our commitment to combating anti-Semitism in all its manifestations, including the ways in which the Holocaust continues to resonate in the present.

Verna Yiu, interim provost and vice-president of the University of Alberta

The presence of Yaroslav Hunka at Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s speech last Friday plunged the Canadian government into “deep embarrassment”, to use the words of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The latter presented the apologies of the Canadian Parliament for this blunder, while reiterating that the error was that of the Speaker of the House of Commons, Anthony Rota, who had sent an invitation card to this citizen from his constituency.

Having lost the confidence of all parties, Mr. Rota resigned last Tuesday.

In addition to embarrassing the Trudeau government, the affair reinvigorated the Kremlin’s propaganda machine. Since then, the Russian embassy in Canada has increased its messages on the social network X.

One of the most recent attacks: Yaroslav Hunka is a donor to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, according to screenshots published on X. His name appears on the organization’s website, but the organization did not respond to questions of The PressTHURSDAY.

On the Conservative Party side, we are not finished with this new controversy which is shaking the government in matters of international affairs. The party will ask that a House of Commons committee examine whether security checks failed to prevent its presence, The Canadian Press reported.

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