Ottawa announces new sanctions on Moscow but returns turbine to Germany for Russian pipeline

Federal Minister of Foreign Affairs Mélanie Joly announced new sanctions against Russian agents and organizations both Friday and Saturday, including on a prominent journalist at Russian state-sponsored media RT. It also said it would return an important turbine used in a Russian gas pipeline to Germany.

Ukrainian government 'deeply disappointed' with decision after opposing move

Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly, shown at a news conference in Ottawa in October 2021, announced on Friday that Canada will slap sanctions on 29 Russian agents and 15 entities affiliated with Russia. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)

Canada's foreign affairs minister, Mélanie Joly, announced new sanctions against Russian agents and organizations on Friday and Saturday, with a focus on Russian disinformation efforts and industrial manufacturing.

But the federal government also said on Saturday it will grant "a time-limited and revocable permit" to Siemens Canada that allows for the return of a turbine to Germany. The turbine is used for Nord Stream 1, a set of natural gas pipelines connecting Germany and Russia.

Kyiv had urged Ottawa to keep the turbine, saying that shipping it back would violate sanctions on Russia. The Ukrainian government said on Sunday it was "deeply disappointed" with Canada's decision.

In Saturday's statement, the federal government said returning the turbine was integral for Germany's economy and its citizens, as the country is currently heavily dependent on Russian energy.

Russia has cut the flow of gas in the pipeline by 60 per cent, threatening to keep supply restricted if the turbine is not returned. Siemens said Sunday it was working to get the turbine back in operation as quickly as possible.

WATCH | Canada returns key turbine to Germany for Russian pipeline: 

Ottawa's plan to return Russian pipeline turbines to Germany draws mixed reactions

5 months ago
Duration 2:02
Ottawa has drawn both anger and relief for deciding to return six turbines used for the Nord Stream 1 pipeline that connects Germany and Russia.

In the new sanctions announced on Friday, Ottawa said it is imposing restrictions on 29 agents and 15 entities owned or controlled by the Russian government involved in spreading Russian propaganda with respect to the war in Ukraine, Global Affairs said in a news release.

Among those sanctioned is Sumbatovich Gasparyan, the head of Russian-funded broadcaster RT's international department.

Joly made the announcement while attending the G20 Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Bali, Indonesia.

"The Russian propaganda machine must answer for its lies. Canada is committed to fighting disinformation wherever and whenever it is found," Joly said in the statement.

"Today, we make it clear to those who peddle deception: You will be held accountable. Canada stands with Ukraine."

Canada has now sanctioned more than 1,600 Russian agents or entities in response to Russia's Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine. The sanctions prevent Canadians from engaging in any property dealing with those listed, making any goods available to them or providing financial services to them, among other things.

The government also announced that the import of certain gold products from Russia is now prohibited.

The products include unwrought gold, semi-manufactured gold, gold powder, monetary gold and jewelry made of gold.

The release highlighted other efforts from the Canadian government to counter Kremlin propaganda, including a website focused on countering false claims the Russians have made with respect to the war in Ukraine.

"Canada will continue to use this platform to shed light on how the Russian regime is using lies to justify its illegal, unprovoked and unjustifiable invasion of Ukraine," the news release said.

On Saturday, Global Affairs issued a statement saying Canada intends to expand existing sanctions on the oil and gas industries to include industrial manufacturing.

In a move meant to help "deplete President Vladimir Putin's war chest," sanctions will soon apply to "land and pipeline transport and the manufacturing of metals and of transport, computer, electronic and electrical equipment, as well as of machinery."


Richard Raycraft

Web writer and producer

Richard is a web writer with CBC News and an associate producer with CBC Radio. He's worked at CBC in London, Ont., Toronto, Windsor, Kitchener-Waterloo and Ottawa.


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