Prime Minister Stephen Harper today announced that he will travel to Kyiv, Ukraine, to attend the swearing-in ceremony on June 7, 2014, of Petro Poroshenko as the new President of Ukraine. This will be Prime Minister Harper’s second visit to Ukraine since the outset of the crisis in the country.
Canada has been a leader in the global response to Russian aggression in Ukraine. Canada has put in place sanctions against over 100 individuals and entities responsible for the crisis, contributed hundreds of Canadian observers to help facilitate free, fair and democratic elections in Ukraine, and is providing funds this year to help Ukraine implement needed economic reforms and promote democratic and social development.
The Prime Minister’s visit to Ukraine will be part of a broader trip to Europe, which includes visits to Warsaw, Poland (June 4), to mark the 25th anniversary of the beginning of Poland’s transition from communism to democracy; to Brussels, Belgium (June 4 and 5) to participate in the G-7 Summit; and to Normandy, France (June 6) to mark the 70th anniversary of D-Day and the Battle of Normandy.
- Russia’s illegal occupation of Crimea, Ukraine, and provocations in Eastern and Southern Ukraine remain a serious concern to the international community. Together with its G-7 partners, Canada continues to call on the Russian Federation to respect Ukraine’s territorial integrity.
- Canada and the G-7 have strongly condemned Russia’s aggressive actions in Ukraine, including by imposing coordinated sanctions and travel bans on key Russian and Ukrainian figures and entities responsible for undermining the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.
- Canada and Ukraine have enjoyed close bilateral ties since Canada became the first Western nation to recognize Ukraine’s independence on December 2, 1991. Relations, which are underpinned by the 1.2 million strong Ukrainian-Canadian community, have grown to encompass cooperation in the political, security, and commercial spheres.
- This will be the Prime Minister’s second visit to Ukraine since the outset of the crisis and his third visit to the country since taking office in 2006.
“The people of Ukraine deserve a government that defends the country’s political and territorial integrity against those who would seek to control it once more. I look forward to travelling to Ukraine to witness the swearing-in of President-elect Petro Poroshenko and to offer the people of Ukraine Canada’s full support as they take important steps to restore stability and prosperity.” – Prime Minister Stephen Harper