Defence Minister Anand and Chief of the Defence Staff conclude visit to Europe
March 9, 2022 – Naples, Italy – National Defence / Canadian Armed Forces
Today, Defence Minister Anita Anand, accompanied by Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS), General Wayne Eyre, concluded a trip to Europe during which they reaffirmed Canada’s strong support to Ukraine and commitment to working with North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Allies and partners to strengthen the Alliance’s deterrence and defence posture, and support the security of the region.
In Riga, Latvia, Minister Anand joined Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in meetings with several European counterparts, including Latvian Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš, the Prime Minister of Estonia, Kaja Kallas, and the Prime Minister of Lithuania, Ingrida Šimonytė, as well as the Prime Minister of Spain, Pedro Sánchez. Minister Anand and General Eyre then supported the Prime Minister during a meeting with NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg. They discussed ongoing security challenges facing Ukraine and underscored the importance of collective security in preserving global peace and security and the rules-based international order.
During the visit, Minister Anand and General Eyre visited with Canadian Armed Forces personnel deployed to Task Force Latvia Headquarters and the enhanced Forward Presence Battle Group at Camp Ādaži, in support of NATO assurance efforts. They also met with Latvian Minister of Defence, Artis Pabriks and Lieutenant General Leonīds Kalniņs, Commander of the Latvian National Armed Forces, where they reiterated Canada’s unwavering commitment to NATO, Latvia and the enhanced Forward Presence.
Prime Minister Trudeau also announced that Canada will renew its multi-year commitment to Operation REASSURANCE, the Canadian Armed Forces support to NATO’s assurance and deterrence measures in central and eastern Europe.
During the second leg of the trip the Minister and CDS travelled to Naples, Italy, where they discussed NATO assurance and deterrence plans with members of the Allied Joint Force Command stationed there. They also participated in a town hall with Canadian Armed Forces members deployed in the region.
Since January 2022, Canada has responded to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine by providing financial support, humanitarian and military aid, and imposing financial sanctions and measures to support Ukraine.
“Since Russia began its illegal and unconscionable attack, Ukrainians have displayed immense courage and determination by fighting for their freedom. Canada stands with them. Our government will continue to provide Ukraine with a comprehensive military aid package, and we will work to ensure that this additional equipment is delivered safely and expeditiously. We will leave no stone unturned in our efforts to support Ukraine.”
The Honourable Anita Anand, Minister of National Defence
“Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has reaffirmed the importance of a strong and unified NATO. Now more than ever, the Canadian Armed Forces must continue the important work of collaborating with our closest Allies and trusted international partners. This week, Minister Anand and I met with several of our NATO counterparts to discuss current and future security threats and we thanked personnel deployed throughout Europe for their unwavering commitment and steadfast resolve.”
Chief of the Defence Staff, General Wayne Eyre
As part of Canada’s contribution since early February 2022, the Canadian Armed Forces and the Department of National Defence is contributing $67.5 million in aid to Ukraine, NATO and our regional partners, including:
- up to 4500 M72 rocket launchers and up to 7500 hand grenades, valued at approximately $10.5 million dollars;
- $1 million towards the purchase of commercial satellite high resolution and modern imagery;
- approximately $10 million for 390,000 Individual Meal Packs and approximately 1600 fragmentation vests;
- $12 million donation, from existing Canadian Armed Forces stocks, of at least 100 anti-armour weapons systems – Carl Gustav M2 recoilless rifles, as well related accessories and scopes, 2000 rounds of 84 mm ammunition;
- $25 million in non-lethal aid, which could include: night vision gear, helmets, and body armor;
- the deployment of two C-130J tactical airlift aircraft, along with an air detachment of 40-50 CAF personnel, which have already begun transporting aid destined for Ukraine;
- over $7 million of lethal weapons and support items to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
- This equipment includes machine guns, pistols, carbines, 1.5 million rounds of ammunition, sniper rifles, and various related equipment, and
- over $2 million dollars of personal protective and load carriage equipment, as well as surveillance and detection equipment
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Office of the Minister of National Defence
Department of National Defence
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