Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Future of Canada's Role in Iraq Still Uncertain

By: David Pugliese, The Ottawa Citizen

Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan will travel to Rome and Brussels from February 13-15 to participate in a meeting of defence ministers from the main force contributors in the war against the Islamic State. Sajjan will also participate in a meeting of NATO defence ministers.

His trip comes as the Liberal government has yet to decide what comes next for Canadian military personnel involved in the war against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

Training by Canadian special forces for Kurdish personnel is still suspended.

Sajjan said in late December that he hoped to have a better idea of the future direction of Canada’s mission in Iraq even as the U.S. and Iraq have declared Islamic extremists defeated.

Sajjan said at that time the Canadian Forces leadership was developing options for what is to come next and that advice was expected in early 2018.

The Liberal government has extended Canada’s mission in Iraq until at least March 2019.

Following the meetings on ISIL, Sajjan will travel to Munich from February 16-17 to attend the annual Munich Security Conference, a global forum focused on defence and security related issues, his office said.

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