Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is in Kyiv Monday where he oversaw the signing of a free trade agreement with Ukraine after years of negotiations.
Ukrainian officials are hoping the accord will spark an influx of Canadian investment for their country’s struggling economy.
Before the deal was signed, Trudeau sat down with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko who thanked Canada for its support over the years.
That includes sending hundreds of military and police trainers, as well as helping Ukraine crack down on corruption.
Poroshenko said the efforts are making a difference.
Trudeau didn’t mention Russia by name, but he did reiterate Canada’s support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity.
Russia seized Crimea from Ukraine two years ago, and has supported separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine.
Some European allies have complained Ukraine isn’t doing enough to implement commitments it made in a peace deal with the rebels and Russia, and they’ve warned they may not renew sanctions against Russia.
Trudeau, however, said Canada would push its allies to continue supporting Ukraine.
Earlier in the day, Trudeau and his oldest son, Xavier, paid tribute to the victims of mass atrocities in Ukraine, visiting several memorials dedicated to Ukrainians who were killed by the Nazis and Soviets.
The prime minister returns to Canada on Tuesday.
(The Canadian Press)