It is right to call Russia’s aggression against Ukraine “genocide.” Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau explained during a conversation with journalists in Quebec.
“I think it’s absolutely right that more and more people will be talking and using the word genocide in terms of what Russia is doing [in Ukraine], what Vladimir Putin has done,” Trudeau said.
Earlier, U.S. President Joseph Biden made a similar statement during a trip to Iowa.
“Your family budget, your ability to fill up your tank, none of it should hinge on whether a dictator declares war and commits genocide a half a world away,” Biden told Menlo residents.
Speaking to reporters in Des Moines, the U.S. President clarified his stance: “I called it genocide because it has become clearer and clearer that Putin is just trying to wipe out the idea of even being able to be a Ukrainian.”
The American leader also stressed that the evidence for that was mounting and Russians had done “horrible” things in Ukraine.
Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland said in an interview with CNN that a formal government determination would be made after “a process of collecting evidence [in Ukraine] over time.”
“But I believe that in the end, when we can gather all the evidence, we will probably come to the same definition voiced by President Biden,” she said.
Nuland added that all the events in Ukraine were not accidental: “It is an intentional decision by Russia, by its forces to destroy Ukraine and its civilian population.”
Meanwhile, President of France Emmanuel Macron declined to call Russia’s actions genocide.
“I will be careful with such terms today because these two peoples [Russians and Ukrainians] are brothers,” he said.
This position of the French president provoked a reaction from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine which stressed that Russia’s propaganda about the “brotherly people” was inappropriate.
“The unwillingness of President of France Emmanuel Macron to recognise the genocide of Ukrainians after all the outspoken statements by the Russian leadership and the criminal actions of the Russian military is disappointing. Ukraine and Russia are historically close for objective reasons, but the myth of the two brotherly peoples of Russia and Ukraine began to crumble after the occupation of Crimea and the aggression in Donbas in 2014… ‘Brotherly’ people do not kill children, do not shoot civilians, do not rape women, do not mutilate the elderly, and do not destroy the homes of the other ‘brotherly’ people,” said Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Oleh Nikolenko.
As he noted, even the fiercest enemies do not commit atrocities against defenseless people, so there is no moral or real reason to talk about “brotherly” ties between the Russian and Ukrainian peoples.