Canada completes its command period of Combined Task Force 150

News Release

April 13, 2017 – Ottawa – National Defence / Canadian Armed Forces

Canada handed over command of Combined Task Force 150 (CTF 150) to France today, completing Canada’s third command of this multinational maritime security and counter-terrorism task force located in the greater Middle East region.

The deployment of this headquarters staff was part of Operation ARTEMIS, the CAF’s ongoing contribution to counter-terrorism and maritime security operations across the Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea, Gulf of Oman, and Western Indian Ocean. Canada has a continued long-time contribution to CTF 150 and CMF, having deployed Canadian warships and/or staff to operate with CMF since the beginning of the partnership in 2001.

Commodore Haydn Edmundson of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) relinquished command to Rear Admiral Oliver Lebas of the French Marine nationale during a formal change of command ceremony held at Naval Support Activity in Manama, Bahrain.

Canada’s selection to command CTF 150 demonstrated the confidence of our allies and coalition partners in the CAF’s capability to lead multinational forces.


“Commodore Edmundson and his team are to be congratulated for their successful completion of Canada’s third CTF 150 mission. Canadians can be proud of the CAF’s continued leadership in the fight against terrorism and ensuring that international oceans and waterways remain safe and secure. The successes of the CMF during the Canadian tour contributed in denying the ability to fund illegal activities of terrorist organizations and ensured a safer passage for legitimate mariners. Their participation in Exercise CUTLASS EXPRESS 17 brought additional expertise to assist the region’s nations build their maritime security capacity.”

— Harjit S. Sajjan, Defense Minister

“It has been my honour to lead this outstanding group of professionals who worked diligently in achieving Operation ARTEMIS’ objectives. This Canadian-Australian collaboration continues to demonstrate our shared values and commitment to maritime security in this region of the globe. Canada should be proud of the outstanding achievements of their deployed personnel.”

— Commodore Haydn Edmundson, outgoing Commander Combined Task Force 150

Quick Facts

  • From December 8, 2016, to April 13, 2017, Canada deployed 30 CAF and Department of National Defence personnel to Bahrain to command CTF 150. The Canadian contingent was joined by eight members of the Australian Defence Force. This was Canada’s third command rotation of CTF 150.

  • Three large seizures of drugs occurred during this rotation of CTF 150. On March 2, Royal Australian Navy Ship HMAS Arunta seized more than 800 kg of hashish. On March 13, United States Ship USS Laboon seized 270 kg of heroin. On March 17, USS Laboon seized 500 kg of hashish.

  • Canada’s combined command with Australia provided an opportunity to further develop our interoperability with a key like-minded partner. Our joint efforts to bring security and stability in this region are yet another manifestation of our common values and interests.

  • Through the execution of maritime security operations, capacity building activities, and regional engagements, CTF 150 activities deter and deny terrorist organizations the unrestricted use of the seas to conduct maritime attacks or to transport personnel, weapons, or illicit contraband to fund their activities.

  • CTF 150 promotes security, stability, and economic prosperity alongside coalition partners in an area that spans over two million square miles and encompasses some of the world’s most important transoceanic shipping routes—connecting the Far East to Africa, Europe, and North America.

  • CTF 150 is one of three multinational naval forces operated by Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), the US-led Coalition that has promoted maritime security in the Arabian Sea region since 2002.

  • Canada also contributes to CMF objectives by supporting other allied and partnered commands as requested. 

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