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Canadian Armed Forces Ships Depart to Support Operation CARIBBE

OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 02/09/14 -- Her Majesty's Canadian Ships (HMC Ships) Nanaimo and Whitehorse, will depart Esquimalt, B.C., tomorrow for the Eastern Pacific Ocean to support Operation CARIBBE, Canada's contribution to the multinational campaign against illicit trafficking by transnational criminal organizations in the Americas and Caribbean.

Nanaimo and Whitehorse are Kingston-class Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels (MCDVs), designed for surveillance and patrolling. Their departure marks the beginning of several naval deployments scheduled for 2014 in support of Canada's commitment to Operation MARTILLO - a multinational, joint, combined, and interagency effort among Western Hemisphere and European nations. The operation is designed to deny transnational criminal organizations air and maritime access to the coastal regions of Central America.

Operation CARIBBE continues to help strengthen international partnerships and also demonstrates Canada's commitment to support efforts to address security challenges in the region, including illicit trafficking.

Quick Facts

--  The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) have conducted Operation CARIBBE since
    November 2006, and remain committed to working with Western Hemisphere
    and European partners in successfully disrupting illicit trafficking
    operations in the region.

--  As part of Operation CARIBBE 2013, the Canadian Armed Forces contributed
    four CP-140 Aurora surveillance aircraft, four MCDVs (HMC Ships
    Edmonton, Kingston, Summerside and Yellowknife), two Halifax-class
    frigates (HMC Ships Ottawa and Ville de Quebec), one supply vessel (HMCS
    Preserver), and one Victoria-class submarine (HMCS Victoria) to combat
    transnational crime, resulting in the seizure or disruption of more than
    5 000 kilograms of cocaine.

--  As part of Operation CARIBBE 2014, the Royal Canadian Navy will deploy a
    periodic rotation of warships from both the East and West Coasts, while
    the Royal Canadian Air Force will provide CP-140 Aurora aircraft from
    various long-range patrol squadrons, all in support of Operation
    MARTILLO. One CP-140 Aurora aircraft has already contributed to
    Operation CARIBBE 2014, completing a deployment this past January.

--  Operation CARIBBE is one of the many activities undertaken by the
    Government of Canada and DND/CAF as part of Canada's broader commitment
    to engagement in the Americas. This annual operation directly supports
    the CAF's mission to defend against threats and security challenges to
    Canada, North America, and our defence and security partners.

--  Crewed primarily by naval reservists, Kingston-class vessels excel in
    surveillance and patrol of coastal waters. As such, these warships have
    regularly deployed in support of Operation CARIBBE since 2011.


"Canada continues to strengthen its international partnerships in addressing security challenges in the Central American region by supporting these highly successful operations. Every year, our efforts, and those of our partner nations, are responsible for the interception and seizure of millions of dollars of illicit drugs and play a major role in suppressing trafficking in international waters and airspace."

- The Honourable Rob Nicholson, P.C., Q.C., M.P. for Niagara Falls and Minister of National Defence

"The Canadian Armed Forces' ongoing success of Operation CARIBBE has helped establish great relations and has enhanced cooperation with our allies and partners in the region. Throughout 2014, our ships and aircraft will continue to work with our partners to deter and deny transnational criminal organizations from using merchant shipping lanes for smuggling illicit cargo."

- Lieutenant-General Stuart Beare, Commander, Canadian Joint Operations Command

"I am extremely proud of the dedication and professionalism that our sailors, airmen and airwomen have displayed while deployed on Operation CARIBBE. I am confident that the members of HMCS Nanaimo and Whitehorse, through their presence and operational capabilities, will continue to make meaningful contributions to regional security and help to stem the flow of illicit drugs destined for North American shores."

- Vice-Admiral Mark Norman, Commander, Royal Canadian Navy

Related Products

--  Backgrounder - Operation CARIBBE

Media Relations
Department of National Defence
(613) 996-2353
Toll-Free: 1 866 377-0811

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