Europe

Canada pulls ambassador from Moscow over Ukraine crisis

Feb. 26, 2014: Prime Minister Stephen Harper responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa.

Feb. 26, 2014: Prime Minister Stephen Harper responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa.  (AP/The Canadian Press)

Canada says it is pulling its ambassador from Moscow over the crisis in Ukraine.

A statement issued by Prime Minister Stephen Harper after an emergency Cabinet meeting says Canada also will boycott meetings leading up to the Group of Eight international economic summit being chaired by Russia in June.

Harper strongly condemns Russia's military intervention in Ukraine and urges President Vladimir Putin to withdraw his troops.

International pressure is growing on Russia after its troops took over the strategic Crimea region Saturday. Russia's parliament granted Putin authority to use the military to protect Russian interests in Ukraine, where a new government has been named after demonstrations pushed President Viktor Yanukovych from office.

President Barack Obama, U.N. Security Council members and others are asking Russia to de-escalate tensions.