Accessibility/Mobile Features
Skip Navigation
Skip to Content
Editorial News
Classified Sites

The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Senior officials from troubled Ukraine to be barred from Canada: minister

Federal Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander talks about the situation in the Ukraine on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday January 28, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Enlarge Image

Federal Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander talks about the situation in the Ukraine on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, Tuesday January 28, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

OTTAWA - Senior Ukrainian officials will be barred from Canada as a response to the continuing crackdown on protests in that country, Immigration Minister Chris Alexander said Tuesday.

"We will restrict entry to Canada for key Ukrainian government officials that have been responsible for the repression and silencing of opposition voices," Alexander told a news conference in the foyer of the House of Commons.

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird said it's a symbolic effort, but sends a disapproving message to the government in Ukraine.

Tougher measures could come if the Ukrainian government fails to respond to popular demands for freedom and democracy, he added.

"We'll see just how things evolve," Baird said. "If further action is necessary, we are prepared to take that action."

There have been some encouraging moves in Ukraine, including the resignation of the prime minister and the repeal of anti-protest laws that sparked violent clashes between protesters and police.

But President Viktor Yanukovych remains in power. The protesters have demanded that he quit and that new elections be held.

Baird said the latest moves aren't enough.

"Even though we're encouraged by recent developments in the last 24 hours, the Ukrainian government must accede to the fundamental demands of its people particularly with respect to accountability and the principles of democracy," Baird said.

Alexander said Canada condemns the killing of protesters, describing the actions of "Ukraine's ruling elite" as "utterly deplorable."

Baird warned against a return to past tyranny. "The backward slide to Soviet-style repression and intimidation is not acceptable."

The steps taken by the government Tuesday did little to mollify Liberal critic John McCallum, who described it as "the absolute minimum and largely meaningless."

New Democrats echoed that disdain, urging the government to implement targeted, personal sanctions aimed directly at the leadership of the Yanukovych regime.

Foreign affairs critic Paul Dewar called for expedited visas for those fleeing the country and urged Prime Minister Stephen Harper to get personally involved by placing a call to the Ukrainian president.

"We should be sending a clear signal that we are serious and that there are consequences for the kind of bloodshed we've seen," Dewar said.

  • Rate this Rate This Star Icon
  • This article has not yet been rated.
  • We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high. If you thought it was well written, do the same. If it doesn’t meet your standards, mark it accordingly.

    You can also register and/or login to the site and join the conversation by leaving a comment.

    Rate it yourself by rolling over the stars and clicking when you reach your desired rating. We want you to tell us what you think of our articles. If the story moves you, compels you to act or tells you something you didn’t know, mark it high.

Sort by: Newest to Oldest | Oldest to Newest | Most Popular 0 Commentscomment icon

You can comment on most stories on brandonsun.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is register and/or login and you can join the conversation and give your feedback.

There are no comments at the moment. Be the first to post a comment below.

Post Your Commentcomment icon

Comment
  • You have characters left

The Brandon Sun does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. Comments are moderated before publication. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Brandon Sun Business Directory
Submit a Random Act of Kindness
Why Not Minot?
Welcome to Winnipeg

Social Media