The National Assembly unanimously adopted a motion on Tuesday to dissociate itself from the House of Commons which gave a standing ovation to a former Nazi soldier.
Remember that during the visit of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to Ottawa on Friday, federal parliamentarians greeted in the stands a Ukrainian veteran who served in a unit of the German army on the Russian front during the Second World War.
The President of the National Assembly, Nathalie Roy, for her part suggested that the risk of such a slippage is almost non-existent in Quebec.
“That the National Assembly dissociates itself from the Parliament of Canada which recently gave a standing ovation to a Nazi veteran of the SS,” reads the wording of the Parti Québécois motion, which also expresses the solidarity of the Assembly with the people Jewish.
It was adopted unanimously by the House, with 93 votes in favor, with no abstentions, after the question period. Some elected officials had already left the House during the vote, including Prime Minister François Legault.
In a press scrum, PQ leader Paul St-Pierre Plamondon said that it was “disturbing” that the Commons gave a former SS man a standing ovation and that Canada had become “the laughing stock” of the entire world.
It is an “indefensible and uncomfortable situation,” he commented.
“I was not very impressed,” said the Minister of International Relations, Martine Biron, in the press scrum.
Mr. St-Pierre Plamondon recalled that under the Gérin-Lajoie doctrine, Quebec has its own voice on the international scene and can conduct its diplomacy: it must therefore express itself in this diplomatic incident, according to him.
“I think it is important that Quebec puts it on the international record that Quebec dissociates itself from these events, that we have nothing to do with this historic and shameful blunder. »
At the request of the PQ, the motion will be sent to the House of Commons, the Ukrainian embassy as well as the Advisory Center for Jewish and Israeli Relations.
In a short and rare press scrum, the President of the National Assembly, Nathalie Roy, indicated that the presentation of visitors to the Salon bleu is governed by a directive which had been “framed” and “specified” some time ago .
Is the process completely safe?
“We hope so, but checks are made when it comes to guests in the presidential stands. »
On Friday, the Speaker of the Commons, Anthony Rota, presented Yaroslav Hunka, aged 98, as “a Ukrainian hero, a Canadian hero” who fought for the 1D Ukrainian division. However, this division was also known as the SS Galicia Division, a volunteer unit under the command of the SS.
When the affair broke out on Sunday following complaints from a Jewish rights group, President Rota immediately apologized. And he reiterated them verbally on Monday when debates resumed in the House, but he had to resign on Tuesday due to the disavowal of all parties.