Ukraine: Daily Briefing – April 12, 2017, 5 PM Kyiv time

Ukraine: Daily Briefing
April 12, 2017, 5 PM Kyiv time
Graduation of Ukrainian soldiers from 10-week training course #OpUNIFIER 
Photo – CF Operations
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
The General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces reported at 12:30 PM Kyiv time that in the last 24 hours, no Ukrainian soldiers were killed and five Ukrainian soldiers were wounded in action. Towards Donetsk, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions near Avdiivka, Verkhnotroitske and the Donetsk airport with mortars. At Zaytseve, Opytne and Luhanske village, Russian-terrorist forces fired on Ukrainian positions. Towards Mariupol, Russian-terrorist forces fired on Ukrainian positions along the Pavlopil-Shyrokyne line. Towards Luhansk, Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Novooleksandrivka and Krymske with mortars.
2. Canada’s Senate Adopts Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act (Sergei Magnitsky Law)
On April 11, Canada’s Senate adopted Bill S-226 – Justice for Victims of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act (Sergei Magnitsky Law), introduced by Senator Raynell Andreychuk. Senator Andrychuk stated, “Bill S-226 signals internationally that Canada cannot be used to enable or shelter gross violators of internationally recognized human rights. Through amendments to the Special Economic Measures Act and the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act, Bill S-226 would allow for the Canadian assets and property of foreign nationals to be seized, frozen or sequestered, if those foreign nationals are deemed responsible for, or complicit in, gross violations of internationally recognized human rights. The Senate has done its duty in carefully considering this legislation. It is now the responsibility of the House of Commons to further Canada’s ability to exercise, defend and promote internationally recognized human rights and freedoms using one more valuable foreign policy tool.” A concurrent bill, C-267, was introduced by James Bezan (MP, Selkirk-Interlake-Eastman) in the House of Commons in May 2016. On April 6, 2017 the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Development tabled a report to the House of Commons – A Coherent and Effective Approach to Canada’s Sanctions Regimes: Sergei Magnitsky and Beyond.The report recommends that In honour of Sergei Magnitsky, the Government of Canada should amend the Special Economic Measures Act to expand the scope under which sanctions measures can be enacted, including in cases of gross human rights violations.”
G7 Foreign Ministers, Italy. Photo – Global Affairs Canada
3. G7 Foreign Ministers reiterate support for Ukraine
Following meetings in Italy on April 10-11, the Foreign Ministers of the G7 (Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK, USA), stated, “We stand united in our conviction that the crisis in Ukraine can only be solved by diplomatic means, in full respect for international law and principles and in full support of Ukraine’s independence, territorial integrity and sovereignty. We reiterate our condemnation of the illegal annexation of the Crimean peninsula by the Russian Federation and reaffirm our policy of non-recognition and sanctions against those involved. We are concerned at credible reports of a deteriorating human rights situation in Crimea […]We underline our commitment to the implementation of the Minsk Agreements to achieve a peaceful, sustainable and lasting solution to the conflict in eastern Ukraine. […]We urge all sides to take concrete steps that will lead to the complete ceasefire required under the Minsk Agreements. In particular, we expect Russia to live up to its commitments and to use its influence over the separatists to ensure they meet their obligations.[…]We recognize the responsibility of the Russian Federation in the conflict in Ukraine […] Russia’s behaviour is not consistent with the rules-based international order, whose principles we are committed to protecting and upholding. We remain united in using a wide array of foreign policy tools, including restrictive measures and sanctions, with the goal of persuading Russia to return to a path of shared respect of those principles. We reiterate our call on all sides to assume their responsibilities and fulfil their commitments under the Minsk Agreements, including the withdrawal of foreign armed formations and equipment from the territory of Ukraine, the return of Ukrainian control over its side of the international border and safe access and provision of humanitarian assistance to people in need. We recall that the duration of sanctions is clearly linked to Russia’s complete implementation of its commitments in the Minsk Agreements and respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty. We maintain our commitment to assisting Ukraine in implementing its ambitious and yet necessary reform agenda. We commend Kyiv for the results so far attained in implementing institutional and administrative reforms but much remains to be done. We encourage the Ukrainian Government to target the most critical areas, in particular public administration and political reform, justice reform, decentralization, the fight against corruption and the promotion of civil freedom, particularly the freedom of expression. Efforts to tackle corruption should not be used against civil society, which is vital to Ukraine’s reform path. It is key that social and economic reforms benefits are visible to all citizens of Ukraine. We remain committed to providing support and assistance to accomplish the required reforms in the fiscal, judicial financial, energy, health, welfare and custom sectors as well as in corporate governance of State-owned enterprises.”


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