the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, hosted a roundtable with members of the Ukrainian-Canadian community in Winnipeg to discuss current development challenges in Ukraine as well as Canada’s continued support to Ukraine to respond to Russian acts that undermine the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. Following the roundtable, the Minister announced Canadian support for the Strengthening Multi-Party Democracy project, whose goal is to strengthen democracy and the role of civil society in Ukraine.
“Canada has been steadfast in its opposition to Russian aggression and occupation in Ukraine, and is proud to be among the strongest international supporters of the Ukrainian government’s efforts to restore stability and implement democratic and economic reforms,” said Minister Paradis. “This new initiative will help Ukraine move toward a free, democratic and prosperous society by advancing democracy for all Ukrainians, including marginalized groups such as women and young people.”
The goal of Canada's international development program in Ukraine is to improve democratic governance and economic opportunities for Ukrainians. This project adds to other Canadian efforts to improve the central voter registry, to improve election laws and to develop the capacity of an independent judiciary to improve recognition for human rights. This project will help translate the Euromaidan protest movement into a sustained political movement and help ensure their continued participation in the political process.
“Canada continues to be greatly concerned by the events in Ukraine and we demand that Russian-backed insurgents immediately withdraw from the crash site to allow Ukrainian and international authorities to conduct a credible and unimpeded investigation into the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17,” added the Minister.
In 2014, Ukraine was re-confirmed as a development country of focus for Canada’s international development efforts, as well as being designated a priority country under Canada’s recently released Global Markets Action Plan. Canada is working with the Government of Ukraine to assist with the reforms needed to realize the country's full economic potential and build a sound public institutional and legal environment for closer integration with Europe.