HMCS St. John’s to head to Mediterranean Sea to participate in NATO operation

HALIFAX — A Canadian naval frigate left Halifax Tuesday to continue Canada’s commitment to Operation Reassurance, a NATO standing force meant to deter Russian activity in central and eastern Europe.

It’s the eighth rotation for the navy, which began its commitment in 2014 — and the second deployment within a year for HMCS St. John’s and its 240-member crew.

The ship will replace HMCS Charlottetown serving with Standing NATO Maritime Group 1 in the Mediterranean Sea.

“This mission is very important from a deterrence aspect, it’s very important from a training aspect,” Rear-Admiral Craig Baines told a gathering of family members at the ship’s departure ceremony.

“It’s very important that all of our (NATO) nations be able to operate together, if and when required in the future.”

HMCS Charlottetown, which is expected to return to Canada within the next few weeks, took part in a NATO training exercise in the Mediterranean last September and October. Dubbed “Brilliant Mariner,” the exercise assessed the crisis response of the 11 countries that took part.

Weeks earlier, the ship was in the Baltic Sea, where it took part in coastal defence and anti-submarine warfare exercises.

“This has made a huge difference, in that it shows that Canada stands with their NATO partners,” Baines told reporters.

“It allows us to do very important training and to work on our tactics and procedures. It makes sure we are present in very important parts of the world.”

Baines said warships like HMCS St. John’s are at their “absolute highest level of readiness” when they are deployed on operations like the NATO mission, because of ongoing training.

“That training program is quite lengthy and hard,” he said, adding that it’s been a busy few months for the crew of St. John’s.

Just Posted

Physicians urge Ottawa to pay another $21B over decade for seniors health care

OTTAWA — Physicians are calling on the federal government to shell out… Continue reading

Japan, EU sign trade deal to eliminate nearly all tariffs

TOKYO — The European Union and Japan signed a landmark deal on… Continue reading

Statistics Canada reports manufacturing sales up 1.4 per cent in May

OTTAWA — Statistics Canada says manufacturing sales increased 1.4 per cent to… Continue reading

Former Mountie who fired Taser at Robert Dziekanski drops appeal of sentence

VANCOUVER — The former RCMP constable who fired a Taser at a… Continue reading

Updated: SUV smashes through fences and deck in Anders

Driver taken to hospital after SUV veered off 30th Avenue into Anders

CFIA inspects after video shows pigs crammed into B.C. transport truck

The video shows pigs piled on top of one another in a transport truck on a “sweltering” hot day last week

Cubs’ Kyle Schwarber falls to Bryce Harper in Home Run Derby final

WASHINGTON — Nationals Park was eerily quiet late Monday when Kyle Schwarber… Continue reading

Lava crashes through roof of Hawaii tour boat, injuring 23

HONOLULU — An explosion caused by lava oozing into the ocean sent… Continue reading

Banff holds blessing ceremony with Indigenous elders before letting bison roam

BANFF, Alta. — Several Indigenous elders were flown by helicopter into the… Continue reading

Research expedition looks at unseen depths of Labrador Sea ecosystem

ST. JOHN’S, N.L. — Last summer, a team of scientists returned from… Continue reading

Protesters camped outside Saskatchewan legislature taking province to court

REGINA — Protesters camped outside the Saskatchewan legislature say they are taking… Continue reading

British PM accepts key amendments from hardline Brexiteers

LONDON — British Prime Minister Theresa May on Monday accepted amendments to… Continue reading

‘City of icebergs:’ Study says 100s of Arctic glaciers shrinking, disappearing

The statistics in her recently published paper say it all: hundreds of… Continue reading

U.S. hits back with WTO challenge against Canada’s retaliatory tariffs

OTTAWA — The United States fired back Monday at the Canadian government’s… Continue reading

Most Read


Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $185 for 260 issues (must live in delivery area to qualify) Unlimited Digital Access 99 cents for the first four weeks and then only $15 per month Five-day delivery plus unlimited digital access for $15 a month