Canadian Ukrainian community calling on Ottawa to help stop violence

Associated Press

As the month long violent clashes between protestors and authorities continue in Kiev, the Ukrainian community closer to home and federal MPs, are calling on the Canadian government to intervene.

The Ukrainian Canadian Congress held a protest on parliament hill Wednesday, asking Ottawa to impose sanctions on Ukraine to ensure the government brings to justice the people responsible for the killings.

It wants Canada to put pressure on European countries to do the same, and to send a mission to monitor human rights violations, among other things.

“Europe, Canada, the states they have to show that they are with the Ukrainians and they want to help them become a democratic society, something has to be done,” Lina Gavrilova, with the Montreal chapter of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress said.

The congress said it was proud of the Ukrainian people fighting for their rights and is outraged at the decision of Ukrainian authorities to use deadly force against them.

At least 25 people have been killed and thousands have been injured since the deadly protests began in November.

The demonstrators want the government to join the European Union and are demanding elections. They are also angered by President Viktor Yanukovich's acceptance of a financial bailout package from Russia.

On Wednesday, Ottawa temporarily closed the Canadian Embassy in Kiev.

Prime Minister Harper is calling on Ukraine's government to work with its opposition to achieve a peaceful solution.

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