Government of Canada’s response to the situation in Ukraine

Ottawa, Ontario
17 April 2014

The Government of Canada is taking important steps to support Ukraine and to impose sanctions against those responsible for the ongoing crisis.

January 26, 2014

Andrew Bennett, Canada’s Ambassador for Religious Freedom, led a successful visit to Ukraine, during which he expressed Canada’s ongoing concern about violations of basic freedoms and reinforced Canada’s commitment to the Ukrainian people.

February 14, 2014

John Baird, Minister of Foreign Affairs, announced funding to provide supplies, equipment and medical care for Ukrainian activists through a contribution to the International Renaissance Foundation, a Ukrainian non-governmental organization.

February 28, 2014

Minister Baird led a successful mission to Ukraine, where he and the Canadian delegation of parliamentarians and representatives of the Ukrainian-Canadian community met with key members of the new government.

March 1, 2014

In response to the very serious developments in Ukraine, Prime Minister Stephen Harper convened a meeting of Cabinet Ministers, preceded by a bilateral phone call with President Obama. In a statement, the Prime Minister announced:

  • Canada suspended its engagement in preparation for the G-8 Summit, currently planned for Sochi, and that the Canadian Ambassador in Russia is being recalled for consultations;
  • Canada’s support for the immediate deployment of international monitors from the United Nations and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe to Ukraine; and,
  • Canada’s engagement in discussions aimed at developing a financial aid package for Ukraine.

March 2, 2014

Canada and other G-7 leaders issued a joint statement condemning the Russian Federation’s clear violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. In addition, they announced that they will “suspend our participation in activities associated with the preparation of the scheduled G-8 Summit in Sochi in June, until the environment comes back to where the G-8 is able to have a meaningful discussion.”

March 3, 2014

Prime Minister Harper issued a statement once again calling on President Putin to immediately withdraw his military from Crimea, adding that the situation in Ukraine remains extremely serious for global peace and security. He added that he has cancelled government representation at the Paralympic Games and instructed officials to review all planned bilateral interaction with Russia.

Prime Minister Harper spoke with Arseniy Yatsenyuk, Prime Minister of Ukraine, about developments in Crimea and other regions in the south and east of Ukraine. Prime Minister Harper condemned in the strongest terms President Putin’s military intervention in Ukraine. 

March 4, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that, effective immediately, all planned bilateral activities between the Canadian Armed Forces and the military of the Russian Federation are suspended. This includes exercises, such as NORAD’s Exercise Vigilant Eagle, and scheduled meetings.

March 5, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that, at the request of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine, Canada will freeze the assets of members of the Yanukovych regime. As a result, 18 people, including members of the former Yanukovych regime, members of their families, and their close associates, were listed in regulations under the Freezing Assets of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act.

Canada also suspended its participation in the Canada-Russia Intergovernmental Economic Commission.

Prime Minister Harper announced that at Ukraine’s request, Canada, along with a number of other member countries of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, will participate in a military observer mission that will report on military activities in Ukraine. Canada contributed two military observers.

March 6, 2014

Prime Minister Harper issued a statement saying that Russia's invasion of Ukraine is an act of aggression, a clear violation of Ukraine's sovereignty, and of international law. He further added that Canada will not recognize a referendum held in a region currently under illegal military occupation.

March 12, 2014

G-7 leaders issued a statement calling on the Russian Federation to cease all efforts to change the status of Crimea contrary to Ukrainian law and in violation of international law. They called on the Russian Federation to immediately halt actions supporting a referendum on the territory of Crimea regarding its status, in direct violation of the Constitution of Ukraine.

March 13, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced more than $220 million in support to help Ukraine stabilize its economy and promote economic and social development. The support will be provided in the form of a loan or loan guarantee, conditional on a broader package that includes International Monetary Fund (IMF) support for Ukraine. $20 million of this commitment will assist the IMF in delivering technical assistance to help Ukraine manage its economic transition and financial sector reforms.

March 16, 2014

Prime Minister Harper issued a statement on the results of the Crimean “referendum”, reiterating that this “referendum” is illegitimate, has no legal effect, and that Canada does not recognize its outcome.

March 17, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced further economic sanctions under the Special Economic Measures Act and additional travel bans against Ukrainian and Russian officials.

The Prime Minister also met with Vadym Prystaiko, Ambassador of Ukraine to Canada, to discuss the ongoing situation.

March 18, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced economic sanctions and travel bans against an additional 17 Ukrainian and Russian officials responsible for undermining the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, and for facilitating Russian military action against Ukraine.

March 21, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced economic sanctions against 14 additional Russian officials and one financial institution, Bank Rossiya. Travel bans were also imposed on these 14 individuals.  

March 22, 2014

Prime Minister Harper concluded a visit to Ukraine where he met with Acting President Oleksandr Turchynov and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk. He also announced Canada’s contribution of $775,000 to a political and security monitoring mission to Ukraine, led by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

March 24, 2014 

Prime Minister Harper, meeting with other G-7 leaders in The Hague, issued the Hague Declaration.  In the Declaration, the leaders announced that they will not attend a planned G-8 Summit in Sochi but will instead convene as a G-7, without Russia, in Brussels in June 2014. They also reaffirmed their “support for Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence” while condemning “Russia’s illegal attempt to annex Crimea.” 

March 27, 2014

Canada co-sponsored a resolution on Ukraine at the UN General Assembly.  The resolution – supported by 100 member-States, with only 11 voting against – reaffirmed Ukraine’s sovereignty, political independence and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders, and underscored the invalidity of the referendum in Crimea.

April 12, 2014

Minister Baird announced that Canada is imposing sanctions on two additional individuals and on a Crimean oil and gas company, Chornomornaftogaz.

April 17, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that Canada is offering the following capabilities to enhance the readiness of NATO allies: six Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 fighter aircrafts and up to 20 staff officers to the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers in Europe to assist NATO planning efforts.