Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison condemned the Russian military’s invasion of Ukraine, as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other federal government officials responded to the aggression by announcing a slew of economic sanctions.
Morrison said Canada should provide assistance to Ukraine, and said he was “shocked” at Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade the country.
“I think we should be all-in, in supporting Ukraine,” Morrison said, during a media availability at his constituency office in Cranbrook. “Sanctions is one thing, but also, we are deploying some military and some of our weaponry to help them out.
“But yes, we should be there.”
As part of Operation Reassurance, which began seven years ago based on principles of defence and deterrence in Central and Eastern Europe by NATO allies, Canada already has military assets in the region, and more are on the way.
As part of Tuesday’s announcement on economic sanctions, an additional 460 military personnel are heading overseas to complement the 800 already deployed to Europe, while also committing a battery of M777 artillery guns and associated support personnel, a second navy frigate, and the re-tasking of a CP-140 Aurora long-range patrol craft already in the region.
On Thursday, Trudeau, flanked by three cabinet ministers, said the sanctions target 58 Russian individuals and entities, which include “elites” and family members, the Wagner Group — a Russian private military contractor, according to the Canadian Military Journal — and prominent Russian politicians.
“Ukrainians woke up to the brutal terrifying reality of war,” Trudeau said, during a press conference on Thursday. “President Putin has launched a horrific unprovoked attack on their country, a sovereign nation, including missile strikes in their capital, Kiev. He has needlessly put the lives of innocent people at risk, violated Russia’s international treaties and launched the greatest threat to European stability since World War Two.
“…President Putin’s brazen disregard for international law, democracy and human life are a massive threat to security and peace around the world.”
Additional sanctions include ceasing all export permits for Russia and cancelling hundreds of existing ones, in sectors such as aerospace, technology and IT, technology in mining, that are collectively worth more than $700 million, according to Mélanie Joly, the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
“Today is a first important package of sanctions, there will be other sanctions coming, and that’s important for the Canadian public to understand, because we want to make sure to put maximum pressure on Vladimir Putin’s regime and also on the Russian economy,” Joly said.