About 30 Canadians who manned Arctic Circle naval convoys that supplied Soviet allies during World War II have received awards from the Soviet Union.

Igor Liakin-Frolov on Thursday pinned his country's Commemorative Medal on the veterans, who served on some of the 900 ships that sailed from Scotland for the Soviet port of Murmansk, on the Barents Sea."The aid of these soldiers and merchants was very important," said Liakin-Frolov of the Soviet Embassy in Ottawa. "It was not decisive, but it was major, and the Soviet people are grateful."

The Murmansk Run continued until the spring of 1944, and one of every five ships was sunk by the Germans, he said.