OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Dec. 17, 2013) - A Canadian general was selected today to become the next Force Commander for the Multinational Force and Observers (MFO), an independent international organization to supervise the implementation of the security provisions of the 1979 Egyptian-Israeli Treaty for Peace.
Brigadier-General Denis Thompson of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) will assume the duties of Force Commander for the MFO in March, 2014, at the rank of Major-General, succeeding Major-General Warren Whiting of the New Zealand Defence Forces.
The MFO was established in 1981 and is comprised of over 1600 personnel, consisting of army, air and naval components from 13 countries; including CAF personnel currently deployed on Operation CALUMET, Canada's contribution to the MFO.
As Force Commander for the MFO, Brigadier-General Thompson will oversee the organization tasked with supervising the implementation of the security provisions outlined in the Egyptian-Israeli Treaty of Peace and the prevention of any violation of its terms.
"This is a great honour for Brigadier-General Thompson, and I congratulate him upon his appointment," said The Hon. Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence. "This increased commitment demonstrates Canada's continued solidarity with our partners and allies as we continue to work together in this sensitive region. Canada is proud to assume this leadership role at an important time in this sensitive region."
For more than 50 years, Canada has advanced the cause of peace in the Middle East. Since deploying troops to Suez in 1956 as part of the world's first UN peacekeeping mission, Canada's commitment to building a just and lasting peace in the Middle East has remained constant. CAF personnel continue to serve in both UN and non-UN peacekeeping missions in the region, and for that, Canadians can be justifiably proud.
"I am delighted for Brigadier-General Thompson," said General Tom Lawson, Chief of the Defence Staff. "This appointment is a credit to him, and reflects his professionalism and dedication. I am confident that the MFO will be well-served by his leadership and experience."
Brigadier-General Thompson will assume his two-year appointment as Commander for the MFO in March 2014 and he will be promoted to the rank of Major-General at that time.
"I am honoured to have been selected for this position," noted Brigadier-General Thompson. "To carry on the legacy of Canadian participation in operations in the Middle East is a tremendous opportunity. I look forward to assuming command over such a dynamic international team."
The last time a CAF General Officer held the appointment of Force Commander for the MFO was from 2001 to 2004.
Brigadier-General Thompson is a graduate of the Royal Military College and has served in all three Battalions of the Royal Canadian Regiment as well as Joint Task Force 2. His operational deployments include command appointments in Cyprus, Germany and Bosnia (twice). He was NATO's Commander of Task Force Kandahar in 2008 and has been in his current post as the Commander of Canadian Special Operations Command since April 2011.
Note to the Editor:
For more information on Op CALUMET, please visit the Canadian Joint Operations Command - Current Operations web page.
For more information on the Multinational Force and Observers, please visit the MFO web page.
For more information on Brigadier-General Thompson, please consult his online biography.