March 12, Ottawa. The Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) today renewed it’s call for the renewal and expansion of Operation UNIFIER, Canada’s military training mission in Ukraine. UCC National President Alexandra Chyczij has written to the Prime Minister of Canada on this matter just a few weeks ago.
Every day, Ukrainian soldiers are fighting and dying on the front in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, defending their country from Russian aggression. Between July 11, 2016 and February 20, 2019, 409 Ukrainian soldiers have died and 2,366 have been wounded in battle.
As part of ongoing international efforts to assist Ukraine in building its military and security capacity, approximately 200 Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) personnel are currently deployed to Ukraine to provide Ukrainian soldiers with training. Since 2015, the program has trained more than 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers.
Canada’s current commitment to Operation UNIFIER extends to March 31, 2019. It is critical that Canada extends its commitment to train Ukraine’s military and security personnel, at current or increased levels of participation, through to 2025.
As Ukraine’s military and security forces continue to defend their country against Russian aggression, they must build on the successes of Operation UNIFIER to improve their capacity and strength. Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence has committed to the professionalization of its military, to meeting NATO standards, and to reaching full interoperability with NATO Allied Forces by 2020.
The new briefing note for Members of Parliament is available below for information.