Canadian Armed Forces completes large-scale manoeuvres in Canada’s North

News Release

August 25, 2017 — Ottawa — National Defence / Canadian Armed Forces

Today marks the end of the 10th edition of Operation NANOOK (Op NANOOK), Canada’s most significant annual northern sovereignty operation. This year over 900 Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) members and Other Government Departments and Agencies (OGDA) participated in Op NANOOK 2017 in two locations: northern Labrador and Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.

Canada’s defence policy, Strong, Secure, Engaged, commits Canada to increase its presence and operational effectiveness in the north. Op NANOOK aims to enhance Canada’s surveillance and presence across its northernmost regions, strengthening the coordination in whole-of-government operations and the way Canada’s military operates in northern conditions. In addition, it provides the CAF opportunities to work with mission partners to determine how best to respond to safety and security issues in the north.


“Canada’s North has its unique challenges; cooperation and meticulous coordination between governmental departments and different levels of government are essential to ensuring the safety and security of all Canadians in the north. Operation NANOOK is the platform where northern stakeholders can identify the best means of responding to a crisis. I am proud of our men and women in uniform who worked diligently alongside their whole-of-government partners to support the community and contribute to the success of the 10th annual Operation NANOOK. Their rapid and professional response to requests for assistance during the simulated emergency scenario demonstrate that Joint Task Force (North) is prepared and ready to respond to a real-life crisis in a timely manner in the north.” 

— Brigadier-General Mike Nixon, Commander, Joint Task Force (North)

“I am extremely impressed by and appreciative of the successful cooperation between the three services of the Canadian Armed Forces, partner agencies and industry, and the people of Labrador. Collaboration and shared learning on Operation NANOOK 2017 strengthens Canada's sovereignty and security, especially in our most remote hinterlands. There is no doubt that soldiers, sailors, and airmen and airwomen are now better prepared to respond all along the length of this majestic, yet challenging coastal and mountainous domain. Joint Task Force (Atlantic) is committed to furthering its links with northern communities and remote industries in order to assure the defence and security of Canada’s North.” 

— Rear-Admiral John Newton, Commander, Maritime Forces Atlantic and Joint Task Force (Atlantic)

Quick Facts

  • This year and for the first time, Op NANOOK was composed of two scenarios conducted by two separate Regional Joint Task Forces.

    • The scenario conducted by Joint Task Force (North) was to respond to a simulated barge fire and explosion around Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.
    • The scenario conducted by Joint Task Force (Atlantic) was to respond to a security scenario in northern Labrador whereby a NORAD north warning system station ceased functioning.
  • With the support of OGDA as well as local authorities, during these two scenarios, CAF members enhanced their ability and competency to operate in Canada’s northern regions. 

  • The CAF achieved a number of objectives during Op NANOOK 2017, including:

    • demonstrating the strength of civil-military partnerships;
    • in a joint effort, synchronizing operations between land, air, and naval elements.
    • exercising traditional survival skills and subarctic Ground Search and Rescue capabilities;
    • exercising the headquarters’ planning function to overcome complex logistical challenges; and
    • building community partnerships in key communities.
  • The CAF conducts annual operations in northern Canada to strengthen security and cooperation with domestic and international partners.

  • Strong, Secured, Engaged will enhance the mobility, reach and footprint of the CAF in Canada’s North to support operations, exercises, and the CAF’s ability to project force into the region.

Related Products

Associated Links


Joint Task Force (North) Public Affairs
Phone: 867-873-0700 x 6056
Email: josé 

Joint Task Force Atlantic Public Affairs
Phone: 902-427-3766
After Hours: 902-452-5280 or

Media Relations
Department of National Defence
Phone: 613-996-2353
Toll-Free: 1-866-377-0811

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