Minister Joly concludes trip to Switzerland, Poland, Belgium and Romania

News release

March 8, 2022 – Bucharest, Romania - Global Affairs Canada

The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today concluded a productive trip to Switzerland, Poland, Belgium and Romania during which she met with multiple allies to discuss Russia’s unjustifiable invasion of Ukraine.

As the broader threat of Russia’s actions in Ukraine ripples across Europe and the world, the Minister reiterated that Canada will continue to engage the international community to strongly condemn President Putin’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine and to urge Russia to return to the negotiating table in good faith.

While in Geneva, Switzerland, Minister Joly attended the 49th regular session of the UN Human Rights Council, where she highlighted Russia’s human rights violations taking place in Ukraine and underscored the importance of international cooperation in promoting and protecting human rights. She also delivered remarks at the Conference on Disarmament, where she underlined the growing threats to global security, including nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of mass destruction.

To gain a better perspective on the situation in Ukraine, Minister Joly visited Poland, where a large number of refugees are seeking asylum as a result of Russian President Putin’s actions. In Warsaw, Minister Joly met with Marcin Przydacz, Deputy Foreign Minister of Poland to discuss the rising humanitarian crisis and Poland’s efforts to assist those fleeing from the conflict in Ukraine. The Minister also met with newly-arrived refugees in Rzeszow, alongside Mayor Konrad Fijolek, who shared the impacts of Russia’s invasion on their lives.

In Brussels, Belgium, the Minister participated in an extraordinary meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers to discuss the Alliance’s coordinated response to President Putin’s aggression against Ukraine. Minister Joly also attended the G7 Foreign Ministers meeting and reaffirmed the importance of a united G7 response to Russia’s egregious actions, including sanctions measures. In addition, Minister Joly participated in meetings with the European Union Foreign Affairs Council, and European Commission President von der Leyen, where she discussed close international cooperation to put maximum pressure on Russia.

During her time in Bucharest, Romania, Minister Joly met with Romanian President, Klaus Iohannis, as well as Romania’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bogdan Aurescu, to discuss the security situation in Europe and how Canada can further assist Ukraine’s neighbouring countries in their response to Russia’s unwarranted and unjustifiable invasion. She also visited the Mihail Kogalniceanu Air Base on the Black Sea, where she reiterated Canada’s support to Romania’s security priorities.

Minister Joly will join Prime Minister Trudeau in Germany, to continue coordinating Canada’s response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Quotes

“As threats to peace and security increase, our response must remain coordinated, clear and united. Canada is determined to do its part and work alongside our allies and partners to support Ukraine and its people as they fight with courage and resilience to protect their freedom.”

- Mélanie Joly, Minister of Foreign Affairs

Quick facts

  • Since 2014, Canada has provided Ukraine with more than $890 million in multifaceted assistance to support Ukraine’s security, prosperity, and reform objectives. In addition, the government announced additional funding on February 14, 2022, with up to $500 million through the Bretton Woods and Related Agreements Act, and on January 21 $120 million in loans through the Sovereign Loans Program (SLP) to support the country’s economic resilience and governance reforms.

  • To address the most pressing humanitarian needs on the ground in Ukraine and neighbouring countries, Canada announced an additional $100 million in humanitarian assistance to be delivered through experienced partners, in addition to our previously announced aid and multi-year programming assistance.

  • Canada also announced the extension and expansion of our Operation UNIFIER. Under Op UNIFIER, Canada has trained nearly 35,000 Ukrainian military and security personnel. We will also be sharing intelligence and providing support to enhance Ukraine’s cyber security.

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Maéva Proteau
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs

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