Canada has joined the International Security Assistance Force led by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and authorized by the United Nations. Canada has provided nearly $ 3.7 billion in international assistance since 2001 and continues to support security, development and humanitarian efforts in Afghanistan. Canada remains committed to upholding the security, development and human rights gains of the past two decades, in particular the rights of women and girls.
The combat phase of Canada’s mission ended in July 2011, when it shifted to a training mission focused on curriculum design and the development of instructional skills in military and military training institutions. Afghan police officers. The Canadian Armed Forces would continue these efforts until the end of our military mission in Afghanistan in March 2014.
More than 40,000 Canadians have served in the theater of operations in Afghanistan. Canada’s first contributions came from the deployment of warships to the waters off Southwest Asia in October 2001, followed by elements of Joint Task Force 2 and the Canadian Army, which moved in. deployed to Afghanistan in December to support efforts to overthrow the Taliban regime and al-Qaeda. Additional Canadian troops would soon be sent to Kandahar province in January 2002.
From 2003 to 2005, Canadians were primarily stationed in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, before returning to the more volatile Kandahar region. From 2005 to 2011, the Canadian Armed Forces assumed command of international efforts to secure Kandahar Province, working with civilian colleagues to help restore stability to the Southern Province of Afghanistan while supporting major efforts. humanitarian and nation-building organizations throughout Afghanistan. In Kandahar, Canadians engaged in heavy fighting, most notably during Operation Medusa in September 2006, which was launched to oust the Taliban from Panjwai District. With the participation of over 1,000 Canadians, it was Canada’s largest combat operation in over 50 years.
A total of 158 members of the Canadian Armed Forces died in Canadian service in Afghanistan, along with seven Canadian civilians, including a diplomat, four aid workers, a government contractor and a journalist. Thousands more returned with physical and psychological injuries.
Canadians recently had the opportunity to view and share their thoughts on the five proposed designs for the National Monument to Canada’s Mission in Afghanistan. When completed, this new monument in Ottawa will recognize the commitment and sacrifice of those who served and the support they received from home.
This 10e anniversary of the end of the combat mission is an opportunity to reiterate our gratitude for the efforts that Canadians have made to bring greater stability to Afghanistan and to strengthen peace and security in the world.
“For nearly a decade, Canada’s combat mission in Afghanistan was the longest in our military history, and we all have a duty to remember the bravery displayed by all Canadians who served there,” both military and civilian. Today we pay tribute to the 165 Canadians killed in Afghanistan and thank the more than 40,000 people who answered the call to serve for peace and security in Afghanistan.
The Honorable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Veterans Affairs and Associate Minister of National Defense
âThis month we remember the courage and resilience of the members of the Canadian Armed Forces deployed in Afghanistan. We honor those who paid the ultimate price during and after the mission. And we are thinking of all who have borne the physical and mental wounds of the battle to this day. On this tenth anniversary of the end of Canada’s combat mission in Afghanistan, we are reminded of the real costs of war and the price of freedom. We are grateful today and every day for the selflessness and bravery of the Canadian military.
The Honorable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of National Defense