Most Canadians approve of sending more troops and other military help to Ukraine, according to a new Mainstreet Research poll.
According to a report from Global News, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet are trying to decide by the end of their two-day retreat today whether to ship small weapons, such as firearms and ammunition, to Ukraine to help it defend itself from an increasingly likely Russian invasion.
Mainstreet asked participants: “Canada currently has about 200 troops on the ground in Ukraine assisting with military training. Do you support or oppose sending more troops to Ukraine and providing increased military assistance?”
Of the respondents, 28 per cent said they strongly agree, followed by 23 per cent who said they somewhat do. Twenty per cent strongly oppose doing so, 13 per cent are somewhat opposed, and 13 per cent said they weren’t sure.
The poll of 1,813 voting-age adults was conducted on Jan. 22 and 23. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.3 per cent with a confidence level of 95 per cent.
Of respondents who also said they vote Liberal, 33.7 per cent said they strongly support sending more military aid, while 32.2 per cent of Conservative supporters said the same.
Those strongly opposed were more likely to support a party other than a mainstream party (48.3 per cent), followed by People’s party supporters (38 per cent); Green supporters (26.6 per cent); Tory voters (22.4 per cent); Bloc Québécois ones (22.3 per cent); backers of the NDP (16.8 per cent); Liberal supporters (11.8 per cent); and the undecided/non-partisan (11.1 per cent).
In 2014, Russia invaded and annexed the Ukrainian territory of Crimea, and, since October 2020, tensions between the two countries have increased further. Russia has stationed about 100,000 soldiers on its side of the border, and its negotiations with the U.S. have failed so far.
While NATO isn’t obligated to defend Ukraine because the ex-Soviet country isn’t a member of the alliance, NATO has made clear that it stands with Kyiv, and has urged Moscow to stand down.
Spain, France, Estonia, the U.K., and the U.S. have already sent weapons and other military support to Ukraine.
About 200 Canadian soldiers are currently on the ground, training local soldiers in 13 locations.