(Madrid) Prime Minister Justin Trudeau concluded his meeting with NATO leaders in Madrid on Friday by announcing additional Canadian military assistance to Ukraine and emphasizing Canada’s participation in the upcoming G-20 summit, although Russia should participate.
Posted at 8:16 am
Updated at 8:31 AM.
The prime minister initially said Canada was in the final stages of talks to supply Ukraine with up to 39 armored combat support vehicles to help it fight the Russian military. He also pledged to donate six Canadian-made drone cameras to Ukraine, to complete the shipment of about 20 cameras earlier this year.
The equipment purchase means Canada has now spent the $500 million allocated in the 2022 budget for military support to Ukraine.
The prime minister also said that Canada will attend the G20 summit scheduled to be held in Bali in November, even if Russian President Vladimir Putin will attend.
Trudeau said he expects all G7 countries, which also include the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy and Japan, to be in Bali. Even if Russia, responsible for its invasion of Ukraine, remains a full member of the G-20.
According to Trudeau, it is very important to have a conversation about the global economy at the G20 summit, and he added that Canada must confront the voice that Russia will make around this table, and all the lies it will tell.
In addition, Prime Minister Trudeau announced that the new NATO Center of Excellence for Climate Change and Security will be based in Montreal.
Canada on Wednesday signed an agreement to convert the NATO combat group it leads in Latvia into a brigade, although the federal government said it was too early to say if that meant sending more troops.
The Canadian-led NATO Combat Group consists of about 2,000 soldiers, including 700 Canadians, and is one of eight such units based in Eastern Europe designed to prevent Russian invasions and deter attacks.
Prime Minister Trudeau will meet later Friday in Madrid with his Spanish counterpart Pedro Sanchez. At the end of the evening, the plane that will bring him back to Canada should land at MacDonald-Cartier International Airport in Ottawa.
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