Canada to join Ukrainian observer mission

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaks at the Prospectors and Developers Association of...

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper speaks at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada Convention in Toronto, Ontario, March 3, 2014. (REUTERS/Aaron Harris)

Mark Dunn, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:05 PM ET

OTTAWA - Two Canadians are joining a team of observers heading to Ukraine to monitor military activities and help defuse a standoff that prompted more sanctions against Russia on Wednesday followed by threats of retaliation.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the measures in concert with international allies to pressure Russian President Vladimir Putin to withdraw ground forces from the mostly Russian-speaking Black Sea peninsula of Crimea.

Sending in an international team still needs the approval of Russia, which is considering the request by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the leading democracy and human rights watchdog in Europe that was formed during the Cold War.

European officials said the mission would involve 18 countries.


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