Canada once again steps up sanctions against Russia over Ukraine crisis

Canada is following the United States in once again stepping up the pressure on Moscow over the crisis in Ukraine.

OTTAWA — Canada is following the United States in once again stepping up the pressure on Moscow over the crisis in Ukraine.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper says two Russian companies and nine individuals will face new sanctions.

The names of the people and companies involved have not been released, but that’s expected to happen later today.

Harper says the latest round of sanctions comes in response to Russia’s continued actions to destabilize the Ukrainian government.

And he suggests more economic sanctions could be on the way unless Russian President Vladimir Putin follows through on an April 17 agreement that was designed to ease tensions in Ukraine.

A half-dozen CF-18 fighter jets are also scheduled to depart Tuesday from Bagotville, Que., to assist NATO operations in eastern Europe.

“The illegal occupation of Ukraine continues and Russia’s military aggression persists,” Harper said in a statement Monday.

“That is why we are imposing sanctions against an additional nine individuals and two entities.”

Earlier Monday, the United States imposed sanctions on seven Russian government officials and 17 companies linked to Putin. It also revoked licenses for some high-tech products used by Russia’s military.

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