Submitted by Yasir Naqvi, MP for Ottawa Centre
Over the last few weeks, we have seen the situation deteriorate in Ukraine. Nonetheless, Canada’s support for Ukraine, for democracy and for human rights remains unwavering. Our government proudly stands with our allies and partners to support Ukraine.
Already, the federal government has committed more than $150 million in humanitarian and development aid to Ukraine, including support for emergency health services, water, food and shelter. We also committed to match up to $30 million in individual Canadians’ donations to the Canadian Red Cross for its Ukraine Humanitarian Crisis Appeal.
To help Ukrainians get to safety, we are also creating two new immigration streams for those fleeing the war who want to come to Canada temporarily or permanently. There will be no limit to how many Canada is willing to accept. We are urgently issuing travel documents to Canadian citizens and permanent residents who are currently in Ukraine, and their immediate family members. We are also prioritizing immigration applications for Ukrainians who want to come to Canada.
To deter Russia and help cease the illegal invasion of Ukraine, we have imposed economic sanctions on hundreds of Russian and Belarussian individuals and entities involved in this unjustifiable aggression, including Vladimir Putin, his inner circle, Russian oligarchs and critical Russian industries. Our government is also committed to the removal of Russian banks from the SWIFT payment system, paralyzing Russia’s ability to use its international reserve assets to finance its invasion of Ukraine. We are also banning Russian crude oil imports into Canada and Canadian airspace is now closed to all Russian aircraft operators.
In addition to the previous three shipments of military equipment, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that Canada is sending additional military equipment to Ukraine in response to Russia’s invasion. Canada stands ready to send another $50 million in specialized equipment, including Canadian-made cameras for surveillance drones, to help Ukraine defend itself against the Russian invasion.
Our government has taken tough and immediate action to support Ukraine from the beginning. Through economic and political sanctions, investments in humanitarian and development aid in Ukraine, our government stands united with our allies and partners to end this aggression. Our Ottawa Centre community will be there to support the Ukrainian community. My office remains available to assist with any individual cases related to the situation in Ukraine and can provide further information on the new measures if needed.
Additionally, following the unlawful demonstrations that took place in downtown Ottawa, Greg Fergus, MP for Hull-Aylmer and I wrote a joint letter to the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs to request a review of the Parliamentary Precinct, with a view to expand it. This will protect the safety of our downtown residents and businesses, bring peace to our communities and ensure that MPs and their staff members can continue their work free from harassment and intimidation. These preventive measures will ensure that the unlawful occupation of downtown never happens again.
Also, I am pleased to be appointed to be a member of the Special Joint Committee on the Declaration of Emergency. As a member, I will ensure that this is a procedurally fair process and that the perspectives of our community are heard.
We have gone through a difficult time, and once again, our community has come together to support those in need. Please do not hesitate to reach out to my office if there is anything we can assist you with by emailing Yasir.Naqvi@parl.gc.ca or call us at 613-946-8682.