04/20/2021

Canadian military contingent will be in the Middle East for another year

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Three years after the military defeat of the armed organization Islamic State of Iraq and Levant, known under the acronym in English ISIS, and recognized as a terrorist organization, the government of liberal Prime Minister Justin Trudeau decided to extend the presence of the Canadian military contingent in the Middle East, to continue the campaign against ISIS remnants .

Through a statement released on Tuesday, Canadian Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan announced the extension of Operation Impact, a Canadian military campaign in the Middle East that began in 2014 under the conservative government of Stephen Harper and was continued by the current Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau.After ISIS ‘flashy emergence amid the chaos of the Syrian civil war and the capture of a vast swath of territory in neighboring Iraq with the intention of creating a caliphate,

The United States organized a global coalition to evict extremists from both countries, using a combination of Iraqi and Kurdish forces and special forces from a handful of Western countries, including Canada.

The first military operation of Operation Impact was carried out on November 2, 2014 in an airstrike that destroyed construction equipment used to divert the Euphrates River near the city of Fallujah. Those teams were considered a target of the Islamic State in Iraq.

Canadian commandos did not participate in the coalition’s military operations in Syria, as Ottawa maintained the position that it would only intervene in Syria if the government of that country requested it.

The work of the Canadian contingent helped Kurdish forces capture Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city.

The Canadian military deployment also aims to strengthen the capacity of the armed forces of Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon. Although the government has authorization from the Canadian Parliament to deploy up to 850 soldiers in support of the counterterrorism mission, Canada’s current contribution in the next year will be significantly shorter, with 17 service members who will work with NATO in an advisory capacity.

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NATO is helping rebuild Iraq’s Defense Ministry and its ability to deal with ISIS militants.

In addition to the troops, two Canadian Hercules C-130J transport planes and a headquarters in Kuwait will also provide support to the anti-ISIS coalition.

In previous years, Canada’s contribution to the mission was greater, including leading the NATO training mission in Baghdad, as well as providing security for instructors from other countries. A contingent of Canadian special forces based in Erbil In northern Iraq, he was conducting counter-terrorism training. Not all the details of that situation are known as the Canadian Department of Defense rarely discloses the tasks that special forces perform.

Canadians also carry out military training missions in Jordan and Lebanon involving a handful of personnel.

Although ISIS was largely defeated on the battlefield more than three years ago, still active members of that extremist organization continue to carry out low-level terror campaigns throughout the region.

Sources: CBC / M.Brewster / Canadian PressRCI