Canada Politician Demands Ban on Russian Vodka to Support Ukrainians in Ontario

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By Sounak Mukhopadhyay | April 4, 2014 12:25 PM EST

Canadian politician Cheri DiNovo demands a ban on Russian vodka in her province. She wants the authorities to take the step as a gesture of protest against Russia's invasion of the Crimean peninsula. The Ontario MPP was scheduled to hold a motion on Thursday April 3.

REUTERS/Baz Ratner
A woman walking by a poster calling people to vote in the upcoming referendum, in the Crimean port city of Sevastopol March 10, 2014.

Ms DiNovo demanded that Russian Standard Vodka should no longer be sold in her province. She wants to impose ban on the drink because it is "entirely Russian". She said that it was the only vodka which was entirely made in Russia. The Canadian-Ukrainian population in Ontario has apparently requested the ban. Additionally, the Canadian Ukrainian Congress too has made similar requests.

The Toronto Ukrainian community posted a video on YouTube that shows people from the community getting involved in a protest. They went to a Bloor Street West LCBO store in March and demanded a ban on the Russian liquor. The protesters were seen with signs like "Please don't support Putin's war effort" and "Don't buy Russian at the LCBO". They were also seen emptying bottles of Russian vodka on to the sewer.

Interestingly enough, Russians too wish to stop selling vodka to the West. There has been an online campaign going on by Russians against supplying vodka to the West, but all in good humour. One photo on Instagram used an apparently worried U.S. President Barack Obama. The user called kos77 wrote in Russian that he had joined the sanctions against Mr Obama. The photo says that neither Mr Obama nor the members of the U.S. administration, Congress and Senate were allowed to wish him a happy birthday. There is even a dedicated Web site which shows "examples" of sanctions against the U.S. president.

Ms DiNovo, on the other hand, is pretty serious about the ban unlike the Russian. She said that the ban would be a sign of solidarity and support to every Ukrainian who called Ontario home. There are presently around 350,000 Ukrainian population in the Canadian province.

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(Photo: REUTERS/Baz Ratner / )
A woman walking by a poster calling people to vote in the upcoming referendum, in the Crimean port city of Sevastopol March 10, 2014.
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