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Royal Canadian Navy ships return from deployment to the Indo-Pacific region

INDO-PACIFIC DEPLOYMENT 2023

His Majesty’s Canadian Ships (HMCS) Ottawa and Vancouver, along with Motor Vessel (MV) Asterix, returned to Esquimalt, B.C. after a deployment to the Indo-Pacific region.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence, Marie-France Lalonde, was at CFB Esquimalt to welcome the ships home from deployment and to thank the sailors and aircrew for their service.

Since departing in early August, the Halifax-class frigates and the naval replenishment unit visited seven countries including Japan, the Republic of Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, and the United States. All three Royal Canadian Navy ships, and one Royal Canadian Air Force CP-140 Aurora Long Range Patrol Aircraft, also participated in ANNUALEX alongside the Royal Australian Navy, an interoperability exercise co-hosted by the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force and the US Navy. HMCS Vancouver and the CP-140 also supported Operation NEON, Canada’s contribution to multinational efforts to monitor sanctions placed on North Korea by the United Nations Security Council.

This deployment marked a major milestone for Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) presence in the Indo-Pacific. 2023 marks the first year that Canada deployed three warships to the Indo-Pacific region, delivering on the commitment that Canada made when it launched its Indo-Pacific Strategy.

As mandated in the Strategy, the CAF has increased its military cooperation with partners and allies, deployed additional assets to increase our military presence, and demonstrated measurable contributions to peace, resilience, and security in the Indo-Pacific region.

“The deployment of HMC Ships Ottawa and Vancouver, as the second and third warships to sail to the Indo-Pacific region this year, is a strong signal of Canada’s commitment to promote stability and prosperity in the region as outlined in Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy. Through their work with our partners and allies, our Canadian Armed Forces members are also delivering on our Women, Peace and Security agenda – deepening our friendships in the region and building on our people-to-people ties. I thank the ships’ companies for their tireless efforts.”

The Honorable Bill Blair, Minister of National Defence

“After more than five months at sea, our sailors have succeeded in furthering Canada’s interests in the Indo-Pacific region. They have helped forged military-to-military ties, built and nurtured new partnerships, and they have stood up for the international rules that keep us all safe. They have done their work admirably. I’m proud to be here today to welcome the crews of HMCS Ottawa, HMCS Vancouver, and MV Asterix home to their friends and loved ones.”

Mme Marie-France Lalonde, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of National Defence

“The lasting military commitment of the Canadian Armed Forces in the Indo-Pacific underscores Canada’s unwavering dedication to nurturing peace and stability within a free and open Indo-Pacific framework. Over the last four months, the commendable efforts of our sailors and aviators stand as a testament to our commitment, reinforcing the norms of regional stability. This persistent presence underscores the Canadian Armed Forces’ steadfast dedication to achieving shared security objectives.”

General Wayne Eyre, Chief of the Defence Staff

“By augmenting the number of warships deployed to the Indo-Pacific region this past year, from two to three, the Royal Canadian Navy is helping Canada maintain an active presence in this region and contributing meaningfully to the Indo-Pacific Strategy. I’m extremely proud of the sailors serving in Vancouver, Ottawa, and the Naval Replenishment Unit in Asterix for their hard work, their professionalism and the dedication shown throughout this deployment, far away from home and their loved ones, in the service of supporting peace, security, and Canadian interests.”

Vice-Admiral Angus Topshee, Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy

 

ADDITONAL INFO

• In 2022, Canada launched its Indo-Pacific Strategy, which significantly increases Canada’s military presence in the region.

• Canada’s Indo-Pacific Strategy addresses five interconnected priorities, with the DND/CAF focused on promoting peace, resilience, and security. This includes the deployment of an additional frigate to the Indo-Pacific, increased DND/CAF participation in bilateral and multinational regional exercises, the development of new capacity building programs, increased civilian defence positions, and new cyber initiatives across the Indo-Pacific.

• Canada is committed to working with, and empowering, regional partners to advocate for the advancement of the WPS agenda.Canada knows that sustainable peace and security are only possible when women are fully involved in the resolution of conflict, and peace and security efforts.

• HMC Ships Ottawa and Vancouver are Halifax-class frigates, each with a crew of approximately 250 personnel of all ranks, including a CH-148 Cyclone helicopter air detachment. These vessels provide significant combat capability and a high degree of mission flexibility thanks to their onboard helicopter.

• MV Asterix has approximately 100 personnel, comprised of civilian and military sailors. It has two hangars able to accommodate a variety of helicopters and can operate up to eight smaller boats with quick launch and recovery capabilities. It has extensive medical facilities and is equipped to perform at-sea fuel replenishment.

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