Canada and Putin's Russia: A Canadian View with a Commentary from Moscow
Arbatova, Nadia Alexandrova
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This lecture is about Vladimir Putin's Russia and the policy of its Western partners, in particular of Canada. This year marks the one hundredth anniversary of official relations between our countries when the tsar's envoy Nicolas Struve arrived in Montreal in 1900 to set up the first Russian consulate in Canada. Russia today remains a nuclear power, permanent member of the UN Security council, rich in human capital and natural resources. Canada and its Western partners have politically and financially supported Russia’s transformation ever since Mikhail Gorbachov began the process in earnest. Since then, the challenge facing Boris Yeltsin’s successor has been sharpened by the high social cost of initial reforms and the evolving international context. Vladimir Putin has publicly committed to stay the course of democratic development. Canada wishes to build on what has been achieved so far and play its part in helping Russia stay the course.