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Politics

Michael McLeod, of all people, on Russia’s no-fly list

Last modified: March 16, 2022 at 11:38am


Russia has named Northwest Territories MP Michael McLeod among Canadian politicians now barred from flying into the country.

The list, issued by the Russian government on Tuesday, marks an obvious retaliation to the raft of sanctions imposed by Canada on what Prime Minister Justin Trudeau termed Vladimir Putin “and his enablers.”

Russia’s foreign ministry named 313 Canadian politicians and officials who “are now denied entry to the Russian Federation,” with McLeod 174th on the list and Yukon MP Brendan Hanley 285th. (The list is in Cyrillic alphabetical order.)

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Nunavut MP Lori Idlout did not appear on the list. When this was pointed out online by a Nunatsiaq News reporter, Idlout playfully responded: “Shh.”

McLeod’s office, responding to a request for comment after this article was first published, stated that he took the appearance of his name as “a gesture to let us know Russia is watching.”

In practice, there is virtually no reason for McLeod to visit Russia with the possible exception of matters related to Arctic governance or, feasibly, the Arctic Winter Games, which were scheduled to be held in the Russian region of Yamal in 2026. Yamal has since been suspended from the event.

Canada has amended its list of Russian sanctions 10 times since Russia invaded Ukraine, placing restrictions on the activities of hundreds of people and financial institutions.

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