03/04/2014 10:15 EST | Updated 05/04/2014 05:59 EDT

Ukrainian Flag Flies On Parliament Hill, Protesters Gather At Russian Embassy

OTTAWA - The Ukrainian flag is flying on Parliament Hill as demonstrators gather nearby at Russia's embassy to protest the military intervention in Ukraine.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper's official Twitter account says the flag, which is on display just east of the Centre Block, illustrates Canada's solidarity with the Ukrainian people.

The move comes the day after the House of Commons unanimously passed a motion condemning Russia's dramatic incursion in the country, which has been riven by protests for months.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, meanwhile, spoke out today to assert his country's right to use its military to protect Russians in Ukraine.

Putin also says any sanctions against Russia by the United States and the European Union will backfire.

He accused the West of sowing divisions within Ukraine.

— With files from The Associated Press

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