Jun 16, 2022

By Jane Brown

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On a visit to Ukraine Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron says there are signs of war crimes in a Kyiv suburb after “massacres” by Russian forces.

He made the comment in the town of Irpin while on a visit with three other European leaders to show support for Ukraine.

Macron denounced the “barbarism” of the attacks and praised the courage of residents who held back Vladimir Putin’s Russian forces from attacking the capital.

Macron was joined by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Italian Premier Mario Draghi and Romanian President Klaus Iohannis on the tour.

Later, they met with Ukraine’s President Volodomyr Zelenskyy.

Meantime, Canada’s Natural Resources Minister says Europe made a strategic mistake by allowing Russia to dominate oil and gas markets, and he says that should serve as a wake-up call as global critical mineral demand is exploding.

Jonathan Wilkinson says as demand grows for the products that make modern-day technologies tick, Canada cannot continue to let China and Russia dominate the industry.

“Where we are going to have an absolute requirement for these mineral,” Wilkinson explained, “Being dependent on these countries that do not always share our perspectives on global affairs and at times use their control of some of these resources as a weapon, is not a good strategy.”

China is the world’s biggest producer of more than half the minerals and metals on Canada’s critical list, but Wilkinson says there is room for Canada and other like-minded nations to pick up their pace on production and ensure a stable supply for everyone.

Before meeting Ukraine’s president, a group of European leaders took a tour of the devastation wrought by Russia.

To understand Ukraine’s fight for survival, they had to see it themselves, with their own eyes. The blown up buildings. The smashed cars. And a message of hope spray-painted on a damaged building despite mounting Ukrainian deaths. French President Emmanuel Macron spotted it immediately amid the ruins. It said “Make Europe, not war.” Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Italian Premier Mario Draghi and Romanian President Klaus Iohannis toured the small city of Irpin on Thursday. It bore the full brunt of Russia’s failed assault on the Ukrainian capital in the first weeks of the war. Later, they met with Ukraine’s president.

(The Associated Press)

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