24 March 201418:24

Comment by the official representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia, Alexander Lukashevich, regarding the introduction of Russian sanctions against Canadian officials

644-24-03-2014

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With regard to the sanctions introduced by the Government of Canada, in the context of the situation in Ukraine and Crimea, against several Russian officials and deputies of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation announces its sanctions against some Canadian top officials, parliamentarians and community leaders.

Such a step was taken in answer to unacceptable actions by Canada, which seriously harm our bilateral relations. We regret that Ottawa preferred to ignore the free will of the population of Crimea, the overwhelming majority of whom voted in full compliance with international law and the UN Charter for their reunification with Russia, and took the course of supporting the current illegitimate regime in Kiev, which is attempting to assert itself "on the wave" of the coup d'état in Ukraine.

Russia is still open to constructive and honest cooperation with Canada, which was pragmatic, we had many shared interests, primarily in issues concerning Arctic affairs. But, well, we need this cooperation no more than Ottawa does. At the same time, we are not hiding that we will properly respond to any unfriendly innuendoes, whatever their motives. We hope that the Canadian authorities and politicians will reach the proper conclusions.

24 March 2014

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