Canada Confronts Russia with up to 500 Observers for Ukrainian Election

EspañolCanada is deploying up to 500 observers to Ukraine to monitor the upcoming presidential election, scheduled for May 25. On Wednesday, Canadian Employment Minister Jason Kenney said the observers are part of his government’s answer to what they perceive as Moscow’s provocations, especially in Ukraine’s eastern region, following Russia’s annexation of the Crimean Peninsula. The government will spend CAN$11 million to cover the costs of the observers.

Kenney said supporting “free and fair” presidential elections in Ukraine is one way for Canada to show its disagreement with Russia, and made clear the Harper administration is not worried about antagonizing the Kremlin.

“It is not Canada that is provoking the Russian Federation. It’s the Russian Federation that is provoking the democratic world by so obviously undermining the sovereignty of an independent member state of the United Nations,” he continued.

With 1.2 million citizens claiming Ukrainian descent, the political crisis engulfing the Eastern European nation resonates strongly in Canada. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has pledged support for stabilizing the Ukrainian economy, and sent Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird on a tour of eastern European capitals in an attempt to build support against Russia.

Source: CTV News.

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