Canada’s Defence Committee calls for increased Russia sanctions and increased NATO presence in Black Sea
December 13, 2018. The Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) welcomes the report tabled by the House of Commons Standing Committee on National Defence (NDDN) calling for increased sanctions on Russia and an increased NATO presence in the Black Sea.
“The international community must respond strongly to escalating Russian aggression, including the recent unprovoked and purposeful attack by Russia on Ukrainian naval ships in the Kerch strait,” stated Alexandra Chyczij, National President of the UCC. “The UCC welcomes the recommendations made by the NDDN Committee and calls on the Government to move swiftly to implement the Committee’s recommendations.”
Stephen Fuhr, Liberal MP, Chair the Committee, together with Committee Vice-Chairs James Bezan, Conservative MP, and Randall Garrison, NDP MP, stated, “For more than four years, Russia has been engaged in a brutal war against Ukraine, and Canada has been a strong supporter of Ukraine throughout that period. But Russian aggression is not limited to that country. Russia is a revisionist military power and is continually challenging the existing international order through its actions and interference in the affairs of sovereign states, particularly Moldova and Georgia, Ukraine’s neighbours in the Black Sea Region.”
In its report, Responding to Russian aggression against Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia the Committee made 13 recommendations, including:
That the Government of Canada issue a notice of early renewal of Operation UNIFIER as a signal of continued support between Canada and Ukraine.
That the Government of Canada continue to provide effective and relevant military training to the Ukrainian Armed Forces and that it look for opportunities to expand the type of training and support provided by the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) through Operation UNIFIER beyond March 2019.
That the Government of Canada demand the immediate release of all illegally captured Ukrainian sailors, release the Ukrainian Navy ships, and restore free passage through the Kerch Strait.
That the Government of Canada demand the release of all Ukrainian, Moldovan and Georgian political prisoners held by Russia.
That the Government of Canada increase sanctions under the Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act (Sergei Magnitsky Law) against those connected to the ongoing aggression against Ukraine, Moldova, and Georgia, and that it specifically list the Russian agents involved in the attacks against Alexander Valterovich Litvinenko and Sergei Viktorovich Skripal.
That the Government of Canada consider sanctions against Russia in the financial and energy sectors in response to its escalation of hostilities against Ukraine.
That the Government of Canada advocate for an increased NATO presence to respond to Russian escalation in the Black Sea.
That the Government of Canada support the aspirations of Ukraine, Moldova and Georgia to join the NATO alliance in due course.
The Committee’s report was informed by testimony from experts at the Atlantic Council, hosted in Ottawa by the UCC.
Yesterday’s NDDN Committee report follows the NDDN Committee’s December, 2017 report, Canada’s Support to Ukraine in Crisis and Armed Conflict