Canada’s Ongoing Support for Ukraine – Timeline

Since the beginning of the crisis, Canada has taken a number of steps to support the Ukrainian people as they work to restore political and economic stability, including imposing sanctions against those responsible for the ongoing crisis. Canada has been clear: it remains ready to intensify its actions if a peaceful resolution is not reached.

January 26, 2014

Andrew Bennett, Canada’s Ambassador for Religious Freedom, led a successful visit to Ukraine, during which he expressed Canada’s ongoing concern about violations of basic freedoms and reinforced Canada’s commitment to the Ukrainian people.

February 14, 2014

John Baird, Minister of Foreign Affairs, announced funding to provide supplies, equipment and medical care for Ukrainian activists through a contribution to the International Renaissance Foundation, a Ukrainian non-governmental organization.

February 28, 2014

Minister Baird led a successful mission to Ukraine, where he and the Canadian delegation of parliamentarians and representatives of the Ukrainian-Canadian community met with key members of the new government.

March 1, 2014

In response to the very serious developments in Ukraine, Prime Minister Stephen Harper convened a meeting of Cabinet ministers, preceded by a telephone exchange with President Obama. In a statement, the Prime Minister announced:

  • Canada’s suspension of preparations for the G-8 Summit, currently planned for Sochi, and that the Canadian Ambassador in Russia is being recalled for consultations;
  • Canada’s support for the immediate deployment of international monitors from the United Nations and the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe to Ukraine; and,
  • Canada’s engagement in discussions aimed at developing a financial aid package for Ukraine.

March 2, 2014

Canada and other G-7 leaders issued a joint statement condemning the Russian Federation’s clear violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. In addition, they announced that they will “suspend our participation in activities associated with the preparation of the scheduled G-8 Summit in Sochi in June, until the environment comes back to where the G-8 is able to have a meaningful discussion.”

March 3, 2014

Prime Minister Harper issued a statement calling once again on President Putin to immediately withdraw his military from Crimea, adding that the situation in Ukraine remains extremely serious for global peace and security. The Prime Minister added that he has cancelled government representation at the Paralympic Games and instructed officials to review all planned bilateral interaction with Russia.

Prime Minister Harper spoke with Arseniy Yatsenyuk, Prime Minister of Ukraine, about developments in Crimea and other regions in the south and east of Ukraine. Prime Minister Harper condemned in the strongest terms President Putin’s military intervention in Ukraine.

March 4, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that, effective immediately, all planned bilateral activities between the Canadian Armed Forces and the military of the Russian Federation are suspended. This includes exercises, such as NORAD’s Exercise Vigilant Eagle, and scheduled meetings.

March 5, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that, at the request of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine, Canada will freeze the assets of members of the Yanukovych regime. As a result, 18 people, including members of the former Yanukovych regime, members of their families, and their close associates, were listed in regulations under the Freezing Assets of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act.

Canada also suspended its participation in the Canada-Russia Intergovernmental Economic Commission.

Prime Minister Harper announced that at Ukraine’s request, Canada, along with a number of other member countries of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, will participate in a military observer mission that will report on military activities in Ukraine. Canada contributed two military observers.

March 6, 2014

Prime Minister Harper issued a statement saying that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is an act of aggression, a clear violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and of international law. He further added that Canada will not recognize a referendum held in a region currently under illegal military occupation.

March 12, 2014

G-7 leaders issued a statement calling on the Russian Federation to cease all efforts to change the status of Crimea contrary to Ukrainian law and in violation of international law. They call on the Russian Federation to immediately halt actions supporting a referendum on the territory of Crimea regarding its status, in direct violation of the Constitution of Ukraine.

March 13, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced more than $220 million in support to help Ukraine stabilize its economy and promote economic and social development. The support will be provided in the form of a loan or loan guarantee, conditional on a broader package that includes International Monetary Fund (IMF) support for Ukraine. Additional support will assist the IMF in delivering technical assistance to help Ukraine manage its economic transition and financial sector reforms.

March 16, 2014

Prime Minister Harper issued a statement on the results of the Crimean “referendum”, reiterating that this “referendum” is illegitimate, has no legal effect, and that Canada does not recognize its outcome.

March 17, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced further economic sanctions under the Special Economic Measures Act and additional travel bans against Ukrainian and Russian officials.

The Prime Minister also met with Vadym Prystaiko, Ambassador of Ukraine to Canada, to discuss the ongoing situation.

March 18, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced economic sanctions and travel bans against an additional 17 Ukrainian and Russian officials responsible for undermining the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, and for facilitating Russian military action against Ukraine.

March 20, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today announced that Senator Raynell Andreychuk and former Ontario Premier Mike Harris will lead the Canadian bilateral election observation mission to Ukraine. They will join the hundreds of Canadian election observers arriving in Ukraine.

March 21, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced economic sanctions against 14 additional Russian officials and one financial institution, Bank Rossiya. Travel bans were also imposed on these 14 individuals.

March 22, 2014

Prime Minister Harper concluded a visit to Ukraine where he met with Acting President Oleksandr Turchynov and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk. He also announced Canada’s contribution of $775, 000 to a political and security monitoring mission to Ukraine, led by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe.

March 24, 2014

Prime Minister Harper, meeting with other G-7 leaders in The Hague, issued the Hague Declaration. In the Declaration, the leaders announced that they will not attend a planned G-8 Summit in Sochi but will instead convene as a G-7, without Russia, in Brussels in June 2014. They also reaffirmed their “support for Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence” while condemning “Russia’s illegal attempt to annex Crimea.”

March 27, 2014

Canada co-sponsored a resolution on Ukraine at the UN General Assembly. The resolution – supported by 100 member-States, with only 11 voting against – reaffirmed Ukraine’s sovereignty, political independence and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders, and underscored the invalidity of the referendum in Crimea.

April 12, 2014

Minister Baird announced that Canada is imposing sanctions on two additional individuals and on a Crimean oil and gas company, Chornomornaftogaz.

April 17, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that Canada is offering the following capabilities to enhance the readiness of NATO allies: six Royal Canadian Air Force CF-18 fighter aircrafts and up to 20 staff officers to the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers in Europe to assist NATO planning efforts.

April 23, 2014

In the lead up to Ukraine’s presidential elections, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced $11 million that will support 500 observers travelling to Ukraine to monitor the upcoming presidential elections.

April 25, 2014

Canada and other G-7 leaders issued a joint statement expressing deep concern at the continued efforts by separatists backed by Russia to destabilize Eastern Ukraine. Leaders also committed to taking further steps to ensure a peaceful and stable environment for the May 25 presidential election.

April 28, 2014

Minister Baird wrapped up a successful week-long visit to Central and Eastern Europe where he met with key allies from the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Latvia and Estonia to promote a common international response to the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. While in Poland, the two countries signed the Canada-Poland Statement of Principles for Coordinated Engagement on Ukraine. Baird also announced $9.2 million in support for Polish-led projects that strengthen democratic development in Ukraine

April 28, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced economic sanctions against nine additional Russians and two Russian banks. Travel bans were also imposed on the nine individuals.

Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence, also announced that the six CF-18 fighter aircraft will leave on April 29 for Romania as part of the Government of Canada’s contributions to NATO measures to reassure Allies in Central and Eastern Europe.

April 30, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that Canada will commit the HMCS Regina, currently deployed in the Arabian Sea, to NATO Standing Maritime Forces to further demonstrate support for Alliance solidarity.

May 2, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that Canadian Army soldiers will take part in Exercise ORZEL ALERT in Swidwin, Poland, from May 5 to 9 as part of NATO reassurance measures in Central and Eastern Europe.

May 4, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced that Canada will impose additional sanctions against 16 Russian entities.

May 11, 2014

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird issued a statement saying that Canada fully rejects the so-called referendums staged in parts of eastern Ukraine.

May 12, 2014

Prime Minister Harper announced economic sanctions and travel bans against an additional 12 Ukrainian and Russian individuals.

May 14, 2014

The Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade issued a statement, encouraging Canadian senior business executives to refrain from attending high-profile events in Russia such as the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, the Innoprom and the World Petroleum Congress.

May 18, 2014

Minister Baird issued a statement on 70th anniversary of the deportation of Crimean Tatars whereby he called for the protection of the rights of all communities in the Crimean peninsula, including Crimean Tatars, who continue to speak out courageously in support of a free and democratic Ukraine.

May 20, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that Senator Raynell Andreychuk and former Ontario Premier Mike Harris would lead the Canadian bilateral election observation mission to Ukraine, joining hundreds of Canadian election observers arriving in Ukraine.

May 25, 2014

On the eve of the Presidential election in Ukraine, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird congratulated the citizens of Ukraine for peacefully exercising their sovereign right to vote during this critical phase in their country’s democratic history.

May 27, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement congratulating Petro Poroshenko on the results of the May 25th presidential elections in Ukraine.

June 5, 2014

Prime Minister Harper attended the G-7 Leaders meeting in Brussels, Belgium to discuss, among other issues, the ongoing situation in Ukraine. At the meeting’s conclusion, Leaders issued a joint communiqué through which they reiterated their support for the Ukrainian people and government and welcomed Petro Poroshenko as President of Ukraine. They condemned Russia’s continued violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine— including its illegal annexation of Crimea and ongoing actions to de-stabilise eastern parts of the country— and called on President Putin to recognize the official results of the election.

June 7, 2014

Prime Minister Harper visited Kiev to attend the swearing-in of Petro Poroshenko as President of Ukraine. Following the ceremony, Prime Minister Harper met with President Poroshenko to congratulate him on his first-round election victory and to offer Canada’s ongoing and full support as the country takes important steps to restore stability and prosperity. This was Prime Minister Harper’s second visit to Ukraine since the outset of the crisis in the country.

June 21, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced further economic sanctions and travel bans against 11 Russian and Ukrainian individuals plus one additional entity.

June 27, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a news release welcoming the signing of the remaining chapters of the European Union (EU)-Ukraine Association Agreement which provide for a Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area between the EU and Ukraine.

July 9-11, 2014

Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade, led a Canadian delegation on a three-day trade and development mission to Ukraine to demonstrate Canada’s continued support for the country. Minister Fast met with Ukrainian Economic Development and Trade Minister Pavlo Sheremeta to discuss ways to advance the Canada-Ukraine Free Trade Agreement, and announced $100,000 to support Ukraine’s Economic Advisory Council.

July 11, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced further economic sanctions and travel bans against 14 additional individuals who have taken violent action aimed at undermining Ukrainian sovereignty and violating Ukraine’s territorial integrity.

July 11, 2014

Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade, on behalf of Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, announced $19.6 million in Canadian support to train horticultural farmers to improve agricultural practices and have better access to financing and new markets in Ukraine.

July 17, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement in response to the downing of a Malaysia Airlines passenger aircraft in eastern Ukraine.

July 19, 2014

Minister Baird calls for immediate investigation into MH17 disaster and full access to crash site

July 21, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the intent to implement economic sanctions against a broad range of entities related to various Russian sectors.

July 23, 2014

Parliamentary Secretary James Bezan and MP Ted Opitz, on behalf of Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, announced $3.2 million in Canadian support to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s Human Rights Training for Judges project to strengthen the justice system and rule of law in Ukraine.

July 24, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced new economic sanctions and travel bans against Ukrainian individuals, as well as economic sanctions against Ukrainian entities and a broad range of entities related to various Russian sectors.

July 26, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper wrote an opinion-editorial published in The Globe and Mail newspaper titled “Our duty is to stand firm in the face of Russian aggression.”

July 29, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the intent to impose additional sanctions on Russia.

July 30, 2014

Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, announced $8.1 million in Canadian support over three years for Strengthening Multi-Party Democracy, a new project that will help strengthen democracy and the role of civil society in Ukraine.

July 30, 2014

Canada and other G-7 leaders issued a joint statement expressing their grave concern over Russia’s continued actions to undermine Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence. In addition, they demanded a prompt, full, unimpeded and transparent international investigation into the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 and a cease-fire at and around the crash site. They further called for a peaceful settlement of the crisis in Ukraine, a sustainable general cease-fire, and for Russia to end its support to separatist groups and ensure effective border control.

August 1, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement marking the opening of Canada’s National Ukrainian Festival. He took the opportunity to underline the destabilizing impact of the Putin regime’s ongoing military activity in Ukraine.

August 5, 2014

Parliamentary Secretary Lois Brown and Member of Parliament Jeff Watson, on behalf of Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, announced an additional $3.6 million in Canadian support to the ongoing Juvenile Justice Reform project to help establish a more effective and responsive juvenile justice system in Ukraine.

August 6, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced additional economic sanctions and travel bans against 19 Russian and Ukrainian individuals, and economic sanctions against 22 Russian and Ukrainian groups and economic entities.

August 7, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement announcing that a Canadian CC-130J Hercules will leave on August 7, from Canadian Forces Base Trenton, to deliver important non-kinetic (non-lethal) security assistance to Ukraine which will help the country secure its eastern border against Russian aggression.

August 15, 2014

Parliamentary Secretary Lois Brown announced $3,832,000 in Canadian support over five years to the International Finance Corporation for its Engaging the Private Sector for Small and Medium Farm Business Development project that will help improve the performance of small and medium agricultural enterprises in Ukraine.

August 24, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement on the occasion of the 23rd anniversary of Ukraine’s independence. He took the opportunity to call on the Putin regime to cease all provocative military activity in Ukraine.

August 28, 2014

John Baird, Minister of Foreign Affairs, issued a statement condemning further Russian incursion into Ukraine and calling on Russia to immediately cease its aggressive acts, respect Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, withdraw its forces, and end the flow of arms, including anti-aircraft systems across the border.

September 1, 2014

Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence, announced that the Canadian Air Task Force (ATF) officially joined NATO’s Baltic Air Policing (BAP) mission following a hand-over ceremony in Siauliai, Lithuania, as Canada’s continues to promote security and stability in Central and Eastern Europe in the face of increasing Russian hostility. While participating in BAP, four CF-188 Hornet aircraft and more than 130 airmen and airwomen from the Royal Canadian Air Force will work with NATO Allies from September to December 2014, in order to preserve the integrity of the airspace of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, and react to any intrusions.

September 2, 2014

Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence, announced that approximately 100 Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) soldiers are participating in Exercise STEADFAST JAVELIN II in Latvia as part of Operation REASSURANCE, Canada’s commitment to working with our NATO Allies to promote security and stability in Central and Eastern Europe.

September 4, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that Canada will be providing support for two initiatives that will help Ukraine and other NATO allies counter the threat posed by Russia’s military expansion in the region. Support of $1 million will be provided through the NATO Trust Funds to build up Ukrainian command and control and communications and computer capabilities to implement NATO standards throughout the Ukrainian Armed Forces. In addition, the three NATO Centres of Excellence in the region – Cyber Security, Energy Security and Strategic Communications – will each receive $1 million (a total of $3 million) to help deter Russian operations in Eastern Europe.

September 4, 2014

Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence, announced that HMCS Toronto will work with vessels from several partner nations in the Black Sea as part of Operation REASSURANCE from September 6 to 27, 2014. In the wake of Russia’s aggression in Central and Eastern Europe, these training exercises and maritime situational awareness operations will enhance maritime security in the Black Sea.

September 4, 2014

The Department of National Defence announced that 13 Canadian Army soldiers will participate in Exercise RAPID TRIDENT 14, a multinational exercise at the International Peacekeeping and Security Centre in Yavoriv, Ukraine from September 11 to 28, 2014. The Exercise will focus on improving stability and peace support operations in the region.

September 11, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a news release welcoming the report produced by Canada’s election observer mission on the May 25, 2014 Ukrainian Presidential election. The Prime Minister received the report from Senator Raynell Andreychuk and former Ontario Premier Mike Harris, co-chairs of the team, in Toronto.

September 11, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced that President Petro Poroshenko of Ukraine will make his first official visit to Canada on September 17, 2014. In the release the Prime Minister also indicated that Canada is committed to contributing to free and fair elections in Ukraine and will send short and long-term observers to the October 26, 2014 Ukrainian Parliamentary elections.

September 16, 2014

John Baird, Minister of Foreign Affairs, announced further economic sanctions and travel bans against four Russian individuals, and economic sanctions against five Russian entities and one financial institution that bear responsibility for the crisis in Ukraine. He also announced that Canada will be sending more than 300 electoral observers to participate in three different missions monitoring the Ukrainian Parliamentary elections that will be taking place in Ukraine on October 26, 2014.

September 17, 2014

Prime Minister Stephen Harper welcomed the visit by Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to Canada. During the visit, the leaders committed to working towards a bilateral free trade agreement. Prime Minister Harper also announced the following two measures that will promote economic and social development in Ukraine:

  • Canada and Ukraine have reached an agreement on the provision of Canada’s $200 million loan to Ukraine to promote economic and financial sector reforms in the country; and,
  • $3 million in additional humanitarian assistance is being provided to Ukraine to assist the estimated 3.9 million people living in areas affected by violence, as well as the nearly 200,000 individuals registered as internally displaced throughout Ukraine.

October 8, 2014

Andrew Bennett, Canada’s Ambassador for Religious Freedom, concluded a successful visit to Ukraine where he announced that Canada will fund two projects through its Religious Freedom Fund in Ukraine to foster the development of a political culture in Ukraine that facilitates democratization. This includes $950,000 in Canadian support over three years for Promoting Security for Religious Communities and Others in Ukraine and $240,000 in Canadian support over two years for Promotion of Religious Tolerance and Reconciliation in Ukrainian Civil Society.

October 13, 2014

Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence, issued a news release announcing that Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship Toronto (HMCS) is joining Exercise NOBLE JUSTIFICATION as part of her Operation REASSURANCE NATO deployment in response to Russia’s aggressive military actions against Ukraine. HMCS Toronto and other Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 warships will conduct Task Force training exercises and force integration activities in the Eastern Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea region from October 13 to 26, 2014.

October 24, 2014

Minister Baird issued a statement in advance of the Ukraine Parliamentary elections commending the people of Ukraine for their show of resiliency and determination for a better future as they prepared to head to the polls for a second time this year.

October 26, 2014

Prime Minister Harper issued a statement to congratulate the people of Ukraine for stepping up, for the second time in 2014, to exercise their fundamental democratic rights during the Parliamentary elections which took place on October 26, 2014.

November 5, 2014

Minister Baird issued a statement strongly condemning Russia’s continued provocative actions following reports that its troops were moving closer to the border with Ukraine.


For more information, please visit the Situation in Ukraine page.