NATO Wants Canada to Aid Rapid Response Force

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By Sounak Mukhopadhyay | September 3, 2014 8:50 AM EST

NATO is going to ask Canada to be a part of its rapid response force by contributing equipment and troops. The alliance appears to strengthen its armed alliance even further to counter Russia's military aggression.

REUTERS/Omar Sobhani
NATO troops arrive at the site of a suicide car bomb attack in Kabul August 10, 2014.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen gave more details on Monday, Sep 1 about the proposed rapid response force. He called it to be a "spearhead" which had the capability to get deployed within a brief notice of only a few days. "This spearhead would be provided by allies in rotation, and could include several thousand troops, ready to respond where needed with air, sea and special-forces support," he said in a news conference in Brussels.

Canada Prime Minister Stephen Harper is going to attend a crucial NATO summit in Wales. Canada is expected to agree with NATO on being a part of the rapid response force against Russia's aggressive strategies against Ukraine. Western leaders have earlier accused Russian President of trying to destabilise its neighbouring country by using its military force.

Rasmussen made it clear that he would expect all the member countries to be united in the alliance's effort to build up the new force. Canadian officials have reportedly agreed to consider the proposal. A senior Canada official said that the Harper government would consider every measure, the Star reported. "Canada is aware of a number of proposals for measures to enhance security and stability, in addition to enhancing the effectiveness of the alliance," he said, "These measures include a rapid response force. We will consider all measures accordingly and look forward to discussions at the summit next week."

The upcoming NATO summit is going to take place on Sep 4 & 5. This will be "the largest gathering of international leaders ever to take place in Britain," according to its official website. The summit was originally scheduled for honouring the end of NATO mission in Afghanistan. However, the summit will now focus on the defence issue in Europe.

Harper left Ottawa on Tuesday for his UK visit. He is scheduled to promote the Canada-European Union free-trade deal in London. He will then move to Wales to join 27 other national leaders for the summit.

Contact the writer: s.mukhopadhyay@IBTimes.com.au

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(Photo: REUTERS/Omar Sobhani / )
NATO troops arrive at the site of a suicide car bomb attack in Kabul August 10, 2014.
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