Trudeau in Latvia: Canada to extend NATO eastern flank deployment indefinitely
from https://antibellum…. shared with thanks
March 8, 2022
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says Canada is extending its NATO military mission in central and eastern Europe for several more years as part of his government’s response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“The troops here are not only defending Latvia or eastern Europe, they’re defending all NATO allies, including Canada,” Trudeau told an outdoor press conference at Latvia’s Ādaži Military Base, which provided a backdrop of soldiers and military vehicles. “They’re defending our freedom and our security…..”
Trudeau was joined at the announcement by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Latvian Prime Minister Krišjānis Kariņš, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand.
Operation REASSURANCE, which was due to expire next year, is Canada’s component of NATO’s mission in the region. As part of the mission, hundreds of Canadian Armed Forces’ personnel have been conducting training and exercises in central and eastern Europe.
Trudeau called the announcement a “multi-year” renewal, but didn’t offer specifics.
Trudeau said 540 Canadian military personnel are deployed in Latvia and that, following a recent announcement, 130 more will be joining them in the coming weeks. Canada has also sent a frigate and maritime patrol aircraft to the region
Late last month, the Trudeau government said around 3,400 CAF personnel were authorized to deploy to the NATO Response Force should they be required.