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You're reading: Canadian group calls for visa bans, asset freezes on Yanukovych officials

The
Canadian Group for Democracy in Ukraine is asking the government of  Canada to increase pressure on the regime of
Ukraine’s President Viktor  Yanukovych by
listing names of individuals tampering with the rule of law. In a letter, the group
asks that violators be disallowed from entering Canada and their assets here
frozen.

Ukraine’s
democracy has been deteriorating since the president came to power, the most
visible indication being the incarceration of political opponents including  Yulia Tymoshenko and Yuriy Lutsenko. Despite
calls from Western powers to  adhere to
the rule of law there has been no response. In fact further draconian actions
of the last weeks underscore the regime’s determination to cripple the opposition
and snuff out the last vestiges of free media on the eve of Ukraine’s parliamentary
elections in October.

The
government has been trying to get TVi, the only independent television broadcaster
left, off the air. “It has lost some 10 million viewers and some $2.5 million in
ad revenues,” says Andy Holowaty a Toronto media consultant. “The government’s
National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council is directly responsible for
this.” The network has also been slapped with bogus back taxes.

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