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Thursday's decision relaunches the Unifier military operation which was interrupted in Ukraine at the beginning of February, barely two weeks before the invasion of the forces February 24, 2022.
National Defense Minister Anita Anand announced at a press briefing on Thursday the deployment of 225 members of the Canadian Armed Forces who will train the Ukrainian military in England.
The training, which should officially begin on August 25, will take place over a four-month period and will focus on the individual skills required in frontline combat, said the minister.
The first cohort of soldiers will depart from Edmonton, Alberta, next week.
The military training will cover various aspects, including weapons handling, first aid on the field of battle, campaign techniques, patrol tactics and the law of armed conflict.
Today's decision therefore relaunch the military operation Unifier which had been interrupted in Ukraine, at the beginning of February, barely two weeks before the invasion of Russian forces, on February 24, 2022.
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Defence Minister Anita Anand during a visit to Latvia last spring
When we suspended the military training program, […] I made a promise to resume these training activities as soon as the situation allowed, reminded Mrs. Anand.
In addition to this announcement, the Minister of Defense confirmed that the 39 light armored vehicles pledged by Ottawa at the end of June at the end of the Atlantic Treaty Organization summit North (NATO), will be sent in the coming weeks.
Two CF-18 aircraft will also be deployed temporarily to serve for simultaneous NATO training activities in Europe, the defense minister said without specifying a specific duration. These two aircraft join the six others already deployed since 2014.
Since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Canada has provided various military aid, including systems anti-tank weapons, ammunition, grenades, M777 howitzers, drones with cameras and eight Roshel-type armor.
This announcement from Ottawa comes weeks after Ukraine criticized Canada for allowing the return of Canadian turbines to Russia.
For Ukraine, this decision would create a dangerous precedent.
When questioned on this subject, Minister Anand defended herself by reiterating the importance for Canada of helping our allies, of stabilizing the markets of the x27; energy. We must continue to support Ukraine and also, at the same time, to stand in solidarity with our European allies, she insisted.
The deployment announced today is part of the Canadian Armed Forces' Operation Unifier, which aims to support its assistance to Ukraine.
After Russia ordered the annexation of the Crimean peninsula and began supporting pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine in 2014, Canada launched a mission with Britain and the United States to help train the Ukrainian military.
Operation Unifier assisted more than 33,000 Ukrainian military and security personnel from the start of the mission until the suspension of its activities in February, supports the federal government.
Despite the withdrawal of its training activities in Ukraine, in response to the war, Canada has greatly expanded its military presence in Europe, in particular by sending 150 soldiers in Poland and reinforcing the battle group of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) di riged by Canada in Latvia.