Canadian politician apologizes for praise of Ukrainian veteran who allegedly fought for the Nazis

Yaroslav Hunka, 98-year-old veteran (right), waits for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj at the Canadian Parliament. He was presented as a war hero by the Speaker of Parliament, but it turns out he worked for the Nazis during the extermination of Jews during the war. Photo: Patrick Doyle/The Canadian Press via AP/NTB

By NTB | 09/25/2023 11:12:37

Policy: The incident occurred within the framework of President Volodymyr Zelenskyj’s visit to Parliament in Ottawa to great cheers and applause. The President of the National Assembly, Anthony Rota, paid tribute to 98-year-old Ukrainian immigrant Yaroslav Hunka during his visit.

Rota described Hunka as a Ukrainian-Canadian veteran who, during World War II, fought for Ukraine’s independence from Russia. Hunka has been hailed as a Ukrainian and Canadian hero.

The Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Resource Center said Canadian media coverage ignores the horrific fact that Hunka served in the 14th Grenadier Division, a Nazi unit whose crimes against humanity during the Holocaust are well documented, he said in a statement.

– An apology is in order to all Holocaust survivors and veterans who fought against the Nazis. It is also necessary to explain how this individual entered the Canadian Parliament and received recognition from the Speaker of Parliament and a standing ovation, write the Friends of Simon Wiesenthal.

– It was entirely my initiative. I would like to offer my sincerest apologies to the Jewish communities in Canada and around the world, Rota said.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s office denied having anything to do with this event in Parliament. A post on

The Jewish Documentation Center calls this statement shocking and deeply disturbing.

Liberal politician Rota issued a full apology on Sunday, saying he had finally had access to more information.