Mr. Speaker, 21 years ago, Ukrainians overwhelmingly chose to return to the status of an independent nation. The day after its referendum, Canada became the first western nation to recognize the newly sovereign Ukraine. We too celebrate the ties that bind Canada and Ukraine, including the over one million Canadians of Ukrainian heritage.
As a member of Parliament, I have travelled to Ukraine to observe presidential and parliamentary elections. I have seen how the people of Ukraine surely and steadily strengthened their democratic resolve. I also have no doubt that they will continue that progress with their upcoming parliamentary election this fall.
Canada continues to support those who strive to achieve freedoms brought about by their desire for democracy.
I wish to congratulate the people of Ukraine for their great accomplishment 21 years ago and for their continued determination to embrace their future within the world of democratic nations.