Przemyslaw Czarnek wants a probe into Yaroslav Hunka’s possible war crimes
Polish minister of education Przemyslaw Czarnek. © Attila Husejnow/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
Polish Minister of Education Przemyslaw Czarnek has signaled that he intends to seek the extradition of a Ukrainian Nazi SS veteran who was cheered in the Canadian Parliament last week.
Czarnek was reacting to the controversy surrounding Yaroslav Hunka, a 98-year-old Ukrainian-Canadian who fought for the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS, also known as the 1st Galician Division, formed by Nazi Germany from mostly Western Ukrainians, that took part in atrocities against Russian, Polish, and Jewish civilians during WWII.
Hunka received a standing ovation during the ceremony in the House of Commons after being introduced by now-former House Speaker Anthony Rota as “a hero… who fought for Ukrainian independence against the Russians.” Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky also attended the ceremony.
Writing on X (formerly Twitter) on Tuesday, Minister Czarnek said that “in view of the scandalous events in the Canadian Parliament,” he “has taken steps towards the possible extradition” of the SS veteran to Poland. The minister also appealed to Poland’s Institute of National Remembrance to “urgently examine the documents whether Yaroslav Hunka is wanted for crimes against the Polish nation and Poles of Jewish origin.”