No reason to trust Russian rhetoric, says UN Ambassador Bob Rae

Canada’s UN ambassador says there is no reason to trust Russia when it comes to ending its invasion of Ukraine and that the international community must come to terms with it a point where the costs of the ongoing war are clear to President Vladimir Putin.

The way to do this is to convince Russia that the international community is firm in its commitment to provide Ukraine with substantial military, financial, humanitarian and moral support, Bob Rae said in an interview with CBC. The House aired Saturday.

“So this is a brutal deal, but we have to convince the Russians that there is a price to pay for their conduct and that they are not going to sweep Ukraine like they thought they could,” Rae said. to guest host Tom Parry.

Russia recently claimed that it had successfully completed the initial phase of what it calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine and would now work to “liberate” the Donbass region. Intense fighting continues across the country, particularly around the beleaguered port city of Mariupol.

LISTEN | Ukrainian MP, Canadian Ambassador to the UN on the war in Ukraine: Ukrainian MP Inna Sovsun joins the House to discuss the conflict in her country, and Canada’s UN Ambassador Bob Rae talks about what can be done to end the war. 18:15

“Based on the experience we’ve had with Russia over the past four months, I wouldn’t believe a word they said,” Rae said. “I think we have to base it on what they actually do.”

Russia’s lack of credibility is part of what caused Rae’s team to mock a letter sent by the Russian delegation to the UN, which went viral on social media and which Rae said he had approved.

The UN ambassador, whose previous political life saw him serve as Ontario’s NDP premier and acting leader of the federal Liberals, noted Russia’s claims earlier this year that which the troops massed on the Ukrainian border were not an invading force.

“They were lying to us all the time. So why would we think they’re not lying to us now?” he said.

“We need to get to a point where a ceasefire will be meaningful and create the conditions for a successful resolution to the conflict,” Rae said. “It’s a conflict that obviously depends a lot on what happens on the battlefield.”

More military aid needed, says Ukrainian MP

In a separate interview on The HouseUkrainian MP Inna Sovsun said fighting around the capital Kyiv had stabilized over the past week, but explosions could still be heard as Ukrainian and Russian forces battled for nearby towns and suburbs .

Sovsun said that since the start of the war, the key to protecting Ukraine was stopping Russian airstrikes.

“You can never feel safe because of airstrikes. Whether you are in western Ukraine, kyiv or elsewhere, you are always at risk of a bomb falling on your head,” he said. she declared.

“We’re not asking the world to get directly involved…but at least give us the weapons we need to cover the skies to establish a no-fly zone ourselves.”

Canada and other NATO countries said they continue to work to deliver weapons to Ukraine, but have maintained that the alliance’s military forces will not impose a no-fly zone, as this would risk direct and escalated conflict with Russia.

The humanitarian crisis is worsening

Sovsun also described the escalating humanitarian crisis in his country, particularly the plight of children who have been forced from their homes. The UN estimates that half of Ukrainian children have been displaced because of the war. Sovson’s own son is one of them.

“I sent my son to western Ukraine and I couldn’t see him for the first three weeks of the war. It was one of the hardest things for me,” he said. she declared.

The conflict, which has now lasted for more than a month, has displaced more than 10 million people, of whom more than 3.5 million have fled Ukraine to neighboring countries and the rest have been internally displaced, according to UN estimates.

WATCH | Ukrainian refugee crisis escalates:

About 3.7 million people have fled Ukraine since the start of the war, according to the UN

The UN refugee agency says around 3.7 million people have fled Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion, of which around two million refugees have entered Poland. 4:37

Rae said humanitarian aid was “actually an area where the UN is succeeding” and that it was important the world continued to provide the financial and material assistance needed to help ease the growing crisis.

The United States has warned that there is a chance that Russia will continue to escalate its war in Ukraine, encouraged by the latter country’s so far successful defense. Sovsun said it heard about the possibility of using chemical weapons, but that did not change Ukraine’s approach to war.

“We can’t just surrender because of what Putin might do and just give up our fight for our country. So of course we’re worried, but that doesn’t change what we have to do, that is say win this war.”