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Wednesday, June 1, 2016

CAF and RCN Prepare for RIMPAC 2016

By: Frontline Defence News

Four warships, several aircraft and more than 1,500 Canadian sailors, soldiers, airmen and airwomen will participate in the United States Navy-led Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) from June 30 to August 4, 2016, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California.

The aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) transits the Pacific Ocean with ships assigned to Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2010 combined task force as part of a photo exercise north of Hawaii.
The 25th edition in a series and held every two years, RIMPAC has grown into the world’s largest combined and joint maritime exercise. RIMPAC 2016 will bring together 45 ships, five submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel from the armed forces of 27 nations. The exercise will challenge participants with unique training opportunities across the spectrum of military capabilities - from humanitarian assistance and disaster response to dynamic maritime security and complex warfighting operations.

"Canada has participated in every RIMPAC since 1971," said Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan. "Over the years, our participation has helped us build and foster collaborative relationships with our allies and partners in the region. RIMPAC 2016 will once again provide the Canadian Armed Forces with a valuable training opportunity, while demonstrating Canadian leadership and operational excellence abroad."

Participation in RIMPAC contributes to the operational readiness of the Canadian Armed Forces. Operational readiness allows the CAF to meet the likely tasks that the Government of Canada will assign.

“RIMPAC 2016 is a valuable opportunity for all services of the Canadian Armed Forces to train together in a joint environment with international allies and partners.," said Rear-Admiral Scott Bishop, RIMPAC Deputy Commander Combined Task Force.

"As Deputy Commander for the Combined Task Force, I am looking forward to working with our forces and our allies. The exercise will challenge our 1,500 Canadian men and women as we improve our readiness to respond to a range of potential operations, strengthen military-to-military partnerships, and enhance our ability to work effectively with participants from more than 25 nations.”

RIMPAC 16 takes place from June 30 to August 4, 2016 in the Hawaiian and Southern California area. Canada is deploying:

A maritime component comprised of four ships (HMCS Calgary, HMCS Vancouver, HMCS Saskatoon and HMCS Yellowknife), a RCN team of clearance divers, and a Forward Logistics Team;
A Land Component comprised of a Company Group based on a Rifle Company from the Third Battalion, Royal 22e Regiment, based out of Valcartier, Quebec;
An Air Task Force comprised of several aircraft (six CF-188 Hornets, one CC-130 Hercules, one CC-150 Polaris and one CP-140 Aurora), a Maritime Helicopter Detachment, and a Tactical Aviation Detachment consisting of four CH-146 Griffons and two CH-147 Chinooks;
More than 1,500 sailors, soldiers, airmen and airwomen; and
Several command, staff and support personnel.

Canadians will also hold key leadership positions during RIMPAC 2016:
Rear-Admiral Scott Bishop will serve as the Deputy Commander of the Combined Task Force; and
Brigadier-General Blaise Frawley, will serve as the Air Component Commander.