A press statement released by Canadian government on Monday morning declared that Canada will be providing one RCAF C-17 transport aircraft as non-combat assistance to help the operation of its allies in Mali for one week. Moreover, it was added that Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, will be indulging in a press conference with media reporters in Montreal at 1 p.m. ET.
This aid was expected after Sunday’s tweet of Mali’s president, Dioncounda Traoré, which mentioned that the United States, Great Britain and Canada will be declaring their “support/logistical assistance” for the French military to continue its mission of fighting rebellion spearheaded by the al-Qaeda-linked extremists in Mali. This tweet was initially confusing to interpret, but once after the other two countries made announcements over the weekend to provide specific assistance for the airstrikes in the former French colony, Canada’s on-the-record support for countering the insurgency before today had been only verbal.
The official statement of federal government was released on late Monday morning, which stated that Canada is providing “heavy-lift aircraft to assist in the transport of equipment into the Malian capital of Bamako, a location that is not part of any active combat zone.” Moreover, it was mentioned that “while the Government of Canada is not, and will not be, considering a direct Canadian military mission in Mali, Canada is prepared, consistent with the UN Security Council Resolution , to provide limited and clearly defined logistical support to assist the forces that are intervening in Mali.” It was also added that “at no time will Canadian Armed Forces members be participating in direct action against insurgent forces in Mali.”
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