Canada slaps sanctions on Crimean, Russian officials

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Mar 18 2014 08:12 AM | Updated as of Mar 18 2014 04:12 PM

OTTAWA - Canada slapped sanctions Monday on seven Russian and three Crimean senior officials it said "bear political responsibility for the crisis" in the former Soviet satellite.

Those targeted by sanctions announced by Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper include an advisor and an aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin, as well as Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin.

Crimea's Prime Minister Serhiy Aksyonov and chairman of Crimea's parliament, Viktor Medvedchuk, were also named.

The sanctions are in response to Crimea's referendum held Sunday to break away from Ukraine and rejoin its former political master Russia, which the West has denounced as illegal.

Harper is scheduled to travel to Ukraine on Saturday to meet with Ukrainian interim prime minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

He will be the first G7 leader to visit the country since tensions broke out between Ukraine and Russia over the Crimean peninsula.

Canada has 1.2 million citizens who trace their ancestry to Ukraine.

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