Canada blasts Russian sanctions against its citizens as ‘unacceptable and unfounded’

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OTTAWA, June 8. /TASS/. Russia’s sanctions against nine Canadian citizens are unfounded and unacceptable, Global Affairs Canada told TASS on Monday.

“We are aware of Russia’s decision to ban nine Canadians from entering Russia in retaliation for the sanctions Canada imposed on March 24,” the Canadian foreign ministry said. “Russia’s sanctions against Canadian individuals, including members of the government, are unacceptable and unfounded.”

Global Affairs Canada told TASS that Ottawa had previously introduced anti-Russian sanctions over the situation around Alexey Navalny and his supporters. “We remain deeply concerned by the deteriorating human rights situation in Russia and the shrinking space for civil society and independent voices,” the statement reads. “We stand by these Canadians that have been targeted and we will continue to work with partners in defence of democracy.”

Earlier on Monday, Russia blacklisted nine Canadian nationals involved in shaping and conducting an anti-Russian policy, banning them from entering the country. The list includes David Lametti, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada; Anne Kelly, Commissioner of the Correctional Service of Canada; Brenda Lucki, Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police; Marci Surkes, Director of Policy for the Prime Minister; Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs; Jody Thomas, Deputy Minister of the Department of National Defense; Michael Rouleau, Vice Chief of the Defense Staff; Brian Brennan, Deputy Commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and Rear Admiral Scott Bishop, Commander of the Canadian Forces Intelligence Command.

On March 24, the Canadian government slapped sanctions on nine high-ranking Russian officials over the situation around Russian blogger Alexey Navalny. The restrictive list includes Russia’s FSB chief Alexander Bortnikov, First Deputy Chief of Staff of the Presidential Executive Office Sergei Kiriyenko, Director of the National Guard Viktor Zolotov, Chief of the Presidential Domestic Policy Directorate Andrei Yarin, Deputy Defense Ministers Alexei Krivoruchko and Pavel Popov, Plenipotentiary Representative of the Russian President in the Siberian Federal District Sergei Menyailo, head of the Federal Penitentiary Service Alexander Kalashnikov and Prosecutor General Igor Krasnov. They are banned from entering Canada, and all their potential bank accounts in the country are frozen.