Ottawa – Bill Blair will travel to the United Kingdom and Germany on his first international trip as Canada’s Minister of National Defence, from September 17-19, 2023. On September 17, in the United Kingdom, Minister Blair will visit Lydd Military Training Camp, where he will hold a town hall with Canadian Armed Forces members who are training members of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) through Operation UNIFIER. Minister Blair will also observe Canadian-led training activities for Ukrainian recruits. On September 18 in London, Minister Blair will meet with Canadian representatives and British officials.
On September 19, Minister Blair will attend the fifteenth meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group at Ramstein Air Base in Germany. He will then travel to Prestwick, Scotland, and visit Royal Canadian Air Force’s air mobility detachment, which has transported over 11 million pounds of Ukraine-bound military aid donated by Canada, partners, and allies.
September 17, 2023 (all times local)
- 11:30 am – Minister Blair will hold a town hall with CAF members at Camp Lydd.
- Opening remarks open to media
- 11:50 am – Minister Blair will scrum with media.
- 12:20-12:35 pm – CAF soldiers salute a group of departing Armed Forces of Ukraine troops.
- Open to media
- 12:35 pm – Media will be given the opportunity to speak to Canadian soldiers deployed on Operation UNIFIER and Ukrainian soldiers being trained by Canada.
- 2:05 pm – Minister Blair will observe Canadian soldiers training Ukrainian soldiers in trench warfare.
- Closed to media (imagery and b-roll to be provided by CAF combat camera)