Statement of the League of Ukrainian Canadians: Imposition of Economic and Diplomatic Sanctions on Russia
At this time it is clear that the West’s response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea has been relatively weak and must be much stronger.
The West must speak with one voice to support Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and must continue to denounce the illegal invasion and occupation of Ukraine’s territory in violation of international law, in violation of the 1994 Budapest Memorandum, and in violation of all bilateral agreements signed by Russia and Ukraine.
The West must sanction the Russian regime with total diplomatic and economic isolation.
This can be done by:
Freezing Russia’s application to join the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development;
Expelling Russia from all G-8 conferences and other international economic forums;
Bringing punitive actions against Russia within the rules of the World Trade Organization for Russia’s repeated violation of WTO rules by its aggressive economic behaviour towards Ukraine and its current blockade of Ukrainian goods on the Ukraine-Russia border;
Intensifying scrutiny of Gazprom’s behaviour in the European gas market and strongly pursuing a pending antitrust complaint;
Continuing to use the forum of the United Nations to condemn Russia’s invasion and occupation of Ukraine;
Targeting Russian banks for money laundering and weapons proliferation;
Putting a total freeze on assets of Russian oligarchs controlled by Putin;
Cutting back on US-Russian bilateral trade, in particular the arms trade; and
Assisting Ukraine with intelligence and other means to prevent Russian special operations agents and Russian neo-Nazi groups from crossing the border to incite separatism in eastern and southern Ukraine.
A word about Germany. Nazi Germany under Hitler was responsible for the murder of millions of innocent victims – Jews, Ukrainians, Poles, Russians, and many others. After the war Germany was rebuilt by the US and therefore has the obligation to support the US, and indeed the West, in imposing total economic sanctions on Russia. No business as usual with Russia.
And finally. The Budapest Memorandum is the agreement signed by the Governments of the United States of America, the United Kingdom and Russia in 1994.
The Budapest Memorandum sets out the obligations of signatories in return for Ukraine giving up its nuclear weapons. Under its terms, the three parties committed to refrain from the threat or use of force against Ukraine’s territorial integrity. The Memorandum also obliges the UK, US and Russia to consult in the event of a situation arising where the memorandum commitments are questioned.
Ukraine voluntarily surrendered the world’s third largest nuclear weapons arsenal in exchange for these assurances.
At a time when Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula is already under Russian occupation, and Putin’s aggression against the mainland seems more and more probable, many Ukrainians assert that Ukraine should have held on to its nuclear arsenal. This is in line with the feelings of many in Ukraine, who feel betrayed.
Many in Ukraine want much stronger action taken by the West against Russia. If stronger action is not taken, many feel that Ukraine should withdraw from the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty.
We ask the West to speak with one voice, to act strongly, to act decisively and not betray the Ukrainian nation, as well as its own ideals and interests.
The Russian regime is a predatory, fascist regime. There is only one way to stop this regime – massive economic support and military assistance for Ukraine and total economic and diplomatic isolation of Russia.
League of Ukrainian Canadians