Harjit Sajjan says Canada to send military to Africa for a ‘long duration’
OTTAWA – Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan says he will soon announce a plan to send Canadian troops on a long-term mission to Africa.
Sajjan says while no decisions have been made yet on numbers, timing or location, Canada’s contribution to a United Nations mission will involve more than the military and go beyond what would be considered a traditional peacekeeping role.
Sajjan made the comment in a teleconference marking the end of a five-country, fact-finding mission to Africa.
The minister visited Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda before making his final stop in the Democratic Republic of the Congo during the eight-day trip.
He was accompanied by former Supreme Court of Canada justice Louise Arbour, who is also a former UN high commissioner for human rights, and retired lieutenant-general Romeo Dallaire, who once commanded a UN peacekeeping force in Rwanda.
Defence and Global Affairs department officials have been assessing the possibility of Canada joining UN peacekeeping operations in Mali or the Central African Republic.