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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Canadian Military Police Prepare Ukrainians for NATO-led Exercise

Military Police instructors with Joint Task Force – Ukraine provide feedback after a practical vehicle checkpoint lesson at the International Peacekeeping and Security Centre in Starychi, Ukraine during Operation UNIFIER on September 12, 2016. (Photo: Joint Task Force – Ukraine)
Military Police instructors with Joint Task Force – Ukraine provide feedback after a practical vehicle checkpoint lesson at the International Peacekeeping and Security Centre in Starychi, Ukraine during Operation UNIFIER on September 12, 2016. (Photo: Joint Task Force – Ukraine)
By: Lieutenant (N) Aaron Lutter, Second in Command of MP Field Training

On September 24, 2016, a Ukrainian Military Law and Order Service (MLOS) Field Platoon successfully completed three weeks of training under the guidance of the Canadian Armed Forces Military Police (MP) at the International Peacekeeping and Security Centre in Starychi, Ukraine.

In September of 2015, the Chiefs of Defence of Ukraine, Lithuania, and Poland agreed to provide a multinational MP company in support of a multinational brigade at a NATO-led exercise to be held in 2017. Given Canada’s recent experience in conducting similar training missions, the Ukrainian MLOS looked specifically to Canada to provide baseline training for their contribution in preparation for that commitment.



“I am convinced that the experience gained through this training will enable these Ukrainian students to effectively perform their duties, be it as part of a multinational exercise or while deployed in the operations zone,” said Major Jade Watson, Deputy Commander of Joint Task Force - Ukraine.

Development and translation of the training syllabus commenced ten weeks prior to deployment. A team of three MP Officers, and two MP Non-Commissioned Members was selected, based on their background and experience in field MP operations. Their first task was to build a training package to include duties and responsibilities of a field MP Platoon with a focus on NATO interoperability. Concurrent with the curriculum development, the MLOS Platoon began internal training to reinforce individual soldier skills, in a manner similar to how Canada soldiers complete annual Individual Battle Task Standards training. Additionally, Operation UNIFIER personnel provided valuable assistance and support through provision of Combat First Aid and Explosive Threat and Hazard Awareness and Recognition training.

The MP team arrived in Ukraine in two groups: an advance party on August 24 and the remainder on September 3, 2016. Training began on September 5. In keeping with the Op UNIFIER battle rhythm, training was conducted six days a week. To best prepare the MLOS Platoon for NATO duties, instructional material centred on the five NATO MP functions: mobility support, security, detention, police functions, and stability police functions.

Classes consisted of theory and practical exercises, and included duties and responsibilities typically assigned a field MP Platoon. These duties included a wide array of tasks such as conduct of Command Post operations, NATO orders format, route reconnaissance, Prisoner of War and detainee handling, site exploitation, refugee and straggler control, rear area security, traffic control, and policing in failed and failing states.

“We were able to learn lots of important new skills on this course, and further improve several skills that we already had. This training has certainly helped prepare us for next year’s exercise,” said Senior Lieutenant Sergii Orlov, Ukrainian MLOS Platoon Commander.

The training package culminated in a three day field exercise, which challenged the MLOS Platoon in all aspects of field MP duties, and confirmed the knowledge and skills gained over the training period. Throughout the scenarios the Ukrainian students demonstrated at every opportunity that they are well prepared to effectively contribute to the multinational MP company in 2017 or on deployed operations.