Prime Minister Stephen Harper announces additional NATO reassurance measures

London, Ontario
2 May 2014

Introduction

Prime Minister Stephen Harper today announced that Canadian Army soldiers will take part in Exercise ORZEL ALERT in Swidwin, Poland, from May 5 to 9 as part of NATO reassurance measures in Central and Eastern Europe.

Approximately 50 soldiers from the 3rd Canadian Division based in Edmonton, Alberta, comprised of a platoon from 3rd Battalion, Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry and support staff will depart on May 2. They will conduct training in parachuting, airborne operations and infantry skills alongside Polish and American counterparts in this United States-led exercise with a view to enhancing Alliance interoperability and readiness.

Quick Facts

  • The Canadian Army has trained with the Polish Army on many occasions:
    • Canadian and Polish parachutists trained together in Quebec during Exercise RAFALE BLANCHE, from January 28 to February 5, 2014.
    • Canadian soldiers joined American mentors in Poland to prepare a Polish headquarters to go to Afghanistan last October.
    • The Canadian Army also trained with Polish, Lithuanian and Ukrainian counterparts during Exercise MAPLE ARCH, from September 9 to 20, 2013.
    • Canadian and Polish soldiers also participated in Exercise RAPID TRIDENT, from July 8 to 9, 2013.
  • Canadian and American soldiers frequently train together as continental and NATO Allies. In addition to naval exercises such as Rim of the Pacific held biannually in the Hawaiian training areas, and on air force exercises such as MAPLE FLAG in Cold Lake, Alberta, Canadian and American army personnel have also frequently trained together in Wainwright, Alberta for the MAPLE RESOLVE series of exercises.
  • The Canadian Armed Forces have been a major contributor to NATO operations since its founding 65 years ago. Canada continues to provide modern, deployable capabilities to Allied missions and highly trained personnel to its command structure.

Quote

“The Putin regime's persistent military aggression and illegal occupation of Ukraine threaten the stability and security of Central and Eastern Europe. By taking part in Exercise ORZEL ALERT, along with NATO allies, Canadian troops will contribute to the promotion of stability and security in the region, and demonstrate that the international community will not standby in the face of Russian militarism and expansionism.” – Prime Minister Stephen Harper

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