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NDP calling on Smith to apologize for ‘tone deaf’ and ‘cruel’ comments on Ukraine war

EDMONTON — Alberta’s Opposition NDP says Premier Danielle Smith needs to apologize for her remarks on the Russia-Ukraine war.

Opposition critic Sarah Hoffman was referring to comments made by Smith earlier this year in which Smith urges Ukraine to accept neutrality, even as its people were fighting and dying in the Russian invasion.

Smith also opined on social media earlier this year that there may be parts of Ukraine that would be happier breaking away from the mother country.

Hoffman says such comments are tone deaf and cruel for a country at war and strike a particular sore point in Alberta, which is home to about a quarter of all Canadians of Ukrainian heritage.

The quotes surfaced over the weekend, and Smith responded in a statement saying she supports Ukraine while not addressing her prior comments.

Smith says she will focus on efforts to fast track and financially support resettlement of Ukrainian refugees.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 17, 2022.

The Canadian Press