Friday, February 23, 2024

Tensions in Ukraine | Canada moves its troops and withdraws its embassy staff

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Alan Binder
Alan Binder
"Alcohol scholar. Twitter lover. Zombieaholic. Hipster-friendly coffee fanatic."

Canada on Sunday moved its military forces to western Ukraine and announced the repatriation of all non-essential staff stationed at its embassy in Kiev temporarily, due to tensions at the Russia-Ukraine border.

Updated yesterday at 3:18pm.

“Our Canadian armed forces have moved west of the Dnieper River and we will continue to take all necessary precautions to ensure their safety,” Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand said on Sunday.

The minister provided an update on the tense situation between Ukraine and Russia at a press conference in Kiev, after meeting with the leaders of the Canadian military operation Unifier, with the aim of supporting the Ukrainian security forces.

Press Service of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine via Associated Press

Defense Minister Anita Anand arrived in Ukraine on Sunday.

“The intelligence we are using is consistent with that of our NATO allies about the fact that – and it is well known – that there is Russian aggression on the Ukrainian border in Belarus,” Anita emphasized, adding again a warning to Russia that it would face “severe sanctions and consequences” if it did not. Tensions are eased.

Canada currently has 900 troops “at sea, on land and in the air” in support of the NATO mission in the context of geopolitical instability in Eastern Europe.

Russia has deployed more than 100,000 soldiers and heavy weapons near Ukraine’s borders, according to Western countries that fear an invasion.

Also on Sunday, days after it recalled its family members, Ottawa announced the repatriation of non-essential diplomats working at its Ukrainian embassy.

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Canada will reinforce its embassy team in Kiev “with officials with expertise in areas such as security sector reform, conflict management, democratic reform, and consular and diplomatic services,” according to a statement.

Although the Canadian embassy in Kiev remains open, the Canadian government advises its citizens not to travel to Ukraine “due to the current threats from Russia and its military deployment in and around the country”.

The United States and the United Kingdom raised the risk of new sanctions against Russia on Sunday, as Washington and its NATO allies stepped up efforts to dissuade Moscow from invading Ukraine, which itself has called on the neighboring country to withdraw its forces from the border. and dialogue.

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