Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

April 13, 2012 16:00 ET

General Natynczyk and Fellow Northern Chiefs of Defence Discuss Shared Arctic Interests

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - April 13, 2012) - The Chief of the Defence Staff, General Walter Natynczyk, hosted Chiefs of Defence and senior military officials from the seven other Northern nations during a two-day meeting held April 12-13 in Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador. The aim of the meeting was to strengthen relationships and foster discussions about common issues including support to civilian authorities.

"I am very pleased with the discussions amongst the eight Chiefs of Defence just completed in Goose Bay. This is the first time the Northern Chiefs of Defence have had the opportunity to meet, as a forum, to discuss issues unique to our respective regions. We were able to gain an understanding of the unique challenges each faces with regards to emergency response and for support to our civilian authorities," said General Natynczyk. "During our short time together, I believe we in the Canadian Forces enhanced our military-to-military relationships with our Northern neighbours. The meeting was a good first step to enhancing communications and relationships, and to building on cooperative efforts in the North."

In attendance at the meetings were Chiefs of Defence and other defence representatives from Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden, and the United States. General Natynczyk initiated this first-ever gathering of the Chiefs of Defence specifically to discuss common safety and security issues pertaining to the North. By hosting this meeting, Canada further demonstrated its international leadership on Northern and Arctic issues.

The primary objective of the two-day conference was to build upon Canada's existing defence relationships in the region by offering attendees an informal opportunity to conduct direct multi- and bilateral discussions focused on Northern issues. Topics discussed included the sharing of knowledge and expertise about dealing with regional operational challenges posed by geography, climate and vast distances; responsible stewardship; and support to civil authorities. The conference also included opportunities to meet with local community leaders and to engage with Canadian Rangers.

For more information on the Canadian Forces in the Arctic, please visit the website at the following link:

For more information about Canada's Arctic Foreign Policy and Northern Strategy, please visit the website at the following link:

For more information about Canada Command, please visit the website at the following link:

For more information about the Office of the Chief of the Defence Staff, please visit his Website at:

For imagery of the Northern Chiefs of Defence meeting, please visit the Canadian Forces Combat Camera website at .

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