Canada expels Russian diplomats in solidarity with United Kingdom
The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today issued the following statement:
“The nerve agent attack in Salisbury, on the soil of Canada’s close partner and ally, is a despicable, heinous and reckless act, potentially endangering the lives of hundreds.
“Canada is today taking action against seven Russian personnel. We are expelling four members of Russia’s diplomatic staff, serving either at the Embassy of the Russian Federation in Canada or the Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Montréal. The four have been identified as intelligence officers or individuals who have used their diplomatic status to undermine Canada’s security or interfere in our democracy. For similar reasons, three applications by the Russian government for additional diplomatic staff in Canada will now be denied. All of these steps have been taken pursuant to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations and to the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.
“We are taking these measures in solidarity with the United Kingdom. These measures are not aimed at the Russian people, with whom Canadians have long and fruitful ties. Canada remains committed to dialogue and cooperation with Russia on issues where we face common challenges.
“The nerve agent attack represents a clear threat to the rules-based international order and to the rules that were established by the international community to ensure chemical weapons would never again destroy human lives.
“This is part of a wider pattern of unacceptable behaviour by Russia, including complicity with the Assad regime, the annexation of Crimea, Russian-led fighting in eastern Ukraine, support for civil strife in Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova and other neighbouring countries, interference in elections, and disinformation campaigns.
“Canada fervently supports the measures that the United Kingdom has taken so far and remains resolutely committed to acting in concert with its allies.”
Media Relations Office
Global Affairs Canada