News Release from Global Affairs Canada
February 1, 2016 – Ottawa, Ontario – Global Affairs Canada
The Honourable Stéphane Dion, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today concluded a successful visit to Ukraine where he met with his counterpart, Pavlo Klimkin, and with Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.
Minister Dion reiterated the need for the full respect of Ukraine’s sovereignty and underlined the importance of full implementation of the Minsk agreements, particularly by Russia, to ensure a durable peace in Ukraine.
Minister Dion also made it clear that the Canadian government intends to speak clearly, bluntly and directly to Russia about its unacceptable actions in Ukraine.
Ukraine has taken important steps to implement its Minsk obligations, as well as essential institutional reforms for the benefit of all Ukrainians. The importance of maintaining this momentum was the subject of constructive discussions, as Minister Dion met with members of Ukraine’s dynamic civil society, dedicated parliamentarians and government officials.
Minister Dion expressed Canada’s strong desire to see Ukraine persevere in its democratic transformation and flourish as a strong and prosperous partner of Canada’s.
Minister Dion also visited the Maidan, where Ukrainians made immense sacrifices for their freedom, and laid flowers at a memorial honouring those who were killed during the protests against the former regime.
Minister Dion is now heading to Rome to attend a ministerial meeting of the Small Group of the Global Coalition to Counter the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) on February 2.
“I am moved by the resilience and resolve of the Ukrainian people. Canada stands firmly with Ukraine and will continue to support the country’s enduring right to sovereignty, freedom and democracy.”
– Stéphane Dion, Minister of Foreign Affairs
- Canada provides multi-faceted support to Ukraine, including low-interest loans for economic stabilization, as well as development assistance projects to promote sustainable economic growth and to advance democracy, human rights, the rule of law and support to civil society.
- This assistance also includes a project and deployments of Canadian police to support Ukraine’s patrol police reform, including cadet training, in-service training, leadership training, public outreach and engagement, and new uniforms. Canadian police are also providing strategic guidance to Ukrainian security institutions.
- The Maidan carries particular historical significance in the hearts and minds of Ukrainians. It was the site of the 2004 Orange Revolution and of the 2013-2014 protests during which many protestors were killed. They became known as the “Heavenly Hundred.”
- Canada has taken a firm response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine, such as by imposing sanctions against 270 Russian and Ukrainian individuals and entities.