OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Aug. 26, 2013) - More than 1 000 Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel took part in Operation Nanook, the premier annual CAF operation held in Canada's North, from August 2 to 23. Operation Nanook 2013 showcased CAF personnel working in close partnership with many federal, territorial, and municipal agencies in a collaborative whole-of-government approach.
"The unique training, knowledge, and experience gained by each participant of Operation Nanook 2013 strengthens the capacity of the Department of National Defence to exercise control over, and defend, Canada's sovereignty in the North," said the Honourable Rob Nicholson, Minister of National Defence. "Operations like this are of great importance as they strengthen the Canadian Armed Forces' ability to work with all Northern partners in the interest of all Canadians, and provide a visible presence in the Arctic."
This year, Operation Nanook took place in four separate areas of the North; each location chosen for its particular geographical and topographical challenges to benefit CAF training. The areas were: Whitehorse, Yukon; Cornwallis Island, King William Island, and Resolution Island, all in Nunavut. The scenarios that unfolded at these locations exercised CAF support to civil emergency management in confronting threats to public safety, and assistance to law enforcement agencies.
"Operation Nanook reflects the Canadian Armed Forces' commitment to a team approach in the North. Exercising alongside our federal, territorial and local partners ensures that we are ready to respond to the security needs of Canadians," said General Tom Lawson, Chief of the Defence Staff. "Operation Nanook 2013 was a resounding success in cooperation and collaboration, clearly demonstrating the Canadian Armed Forces' capability to operate effectively on land, at sea, and in the air across this austere region."
Regular operations in the North, such as Nanook, also serve to ensure the CAF are prepared to deal with safety and security issues that are particular to Canada's vast Arctic region.
"New opportunities are emerging across the North, bringing with them new challenges. Over the past three weeks, CAF personnel have successfully worked through demanding scenarios, confirming our ability to respond to these new challenges head on," said Lieutenant-General Stuart Beare, Commander of Canadian Joint Operations Command. "Our relationships with our partners are stronger, and we have further developed and enhanced vital skills for our soldiers, sailors, airmen and airwomen in an extremely challenging environment."
This was the seventh iteration of Operation Nanook. In addition to this operation, the CAF conduct other annual Northern operations such as Operation Nunalivut in April, Operation Nunakput mid-summer and Operation Qimmiq year-round. These activities complement other CAF routine operations that take place throughout the year across Canada's North.
Notes to editor / news director: Still and video imagery of this operation can be found at: Canadian Armed Forces Combat Camera.