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Canada on Sunday deployed its military troops in western Ukraine and announced the temporary repatriation of non-essential employees from its embassy in Kiev, due to tensions on the border between Russia and Ukraine.

“Our Canadian Armed Forces have moved west of the Dnieper River and we will continue to take all necessary precautions to ensure their safety,” Canada’s Defense Minister said on Sunday. Anita Anand, upon arrival on Ukrainian territory.

The minister took stock of the tense situation between Ukraine Y Russia during a press conference in Kiev, after having met with the leaders of the Canadian military operation Unifier, which provides support to the Ukrainian security forces.

Anita Anand, Canadian Defense Minister. Photo: AFP

“The intelligence we use is consistent with that of our NATO allies, on the fact – widely known – that there is Russian aggression on the Ukrainian border in Belarus,” Anand said, once again putting Russia on notice that it will face ” severe sanctions and consequences” if there is no de-escalation of tensions.

Canada currently has 900 soldiers “at sea, land and air” who support the mission of the OTAN in this context of political instability in Eastern Europe.

Russia it has deployed more than 100,000 troops and heavy weapons near its border with Ukraine, according to Western countries, which fear an invasion.

Also on Sunday, Ottawa announced the repatriation of non-essential diplomats working at its embassy in Ukraine, days after withdrawing their families.

“While we continue to closely monitor the situation, our top priority remains the safety of Canadians. Our officials stand ready to provide consular assistance to Canadian citizens as needed,” the ministry said in a statement.

The embassy in Kiev remains open, he added.

Canada said last week that it would bolster its mission staff with experts in security, conflict management, democratic reform and consular services.

“Together, they will increase our diplomatic capacity and allow us to continue to assess and respond to the evolving situation in support of Ukraine,” he said.

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