Canadian PM visits military exercise in high Arctic Resolute Bay

08:41, August 26, 2010      

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Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper inspected Operation NANOOK 10 on Wednesday in Resolute Bay, Nunavut, a major sovereignty exercise conducted in Canada's High Arctic region.

Harper told a gathering of Canadian soldiers, police and rangers that as the strategic importance of Canada's Arctic grows, the work undertaken by Operation NANOOK (or an Inuktitut word for Polar Bear) is more valuable now than ever before.

"Our Government is committed to protecting and asserting Canada's presence throughout our Arctic," he said.

Harper noted that with other countries becoming more interested in the Arctic and its rich resource potential, and with new trade routes opening up, Canada must continue to exercise its sovereignty while strengthening the safety and security of Canadians living in our High Arctic.

He thanked the men and women of the Canadian Forces and participants in Operation NANOOK 10 for their selfless dedication, commitment and service to Canada, and for their work in the country's Arctic region.

Following the success of previous NANOOK series operations which began in 2006, Operation NANOOK 10 is being conducted in Canada's Eastern and High Arctic from Aug. 6 to 26.

It features sovereignty and presence patrolling, military exercises and operation conducted by police and other civilian departments that focuses on containment and remediation of a simulated tanker leak in the Resolute Bay area.

This year's operation is unique in that it will be the northernmost operation of the NANOOK series -- demonstrating Canada's capacity and confidence in operating in the High Arctic region.

Canada has also invited the United States naval destroyer USS Porter, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Alder, and the Royal Danish Navy ocean patrol vessel HDMS Vaedderen and offshore patrol vessel HDMS Knud Rasmussen for the purpose of exercising and increasing its interoperability with Arctic allies.

Source: Xinhua


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