Operation JADE is Canadas contribution to the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) in the Middle East.
Task Force Middle East
Task Force Commander: Major Blair Baker
Task Force Middle East is the Canadian contingent in UNTSO. It comprises seven officers who work as United Nations Military Observers (UNMOs) and, when requested by the UN, a senior officer who serves in one of several leadership positions in the region.
Operation JADE employs officers of the Canadian Army, the Royal Canadian Navy and the Royal Canadian Air Force.
The UNMOs work with two of UNTSOs Observer Groups: Observer Group Golan, supporting the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF) on the Golan Heights between Israel and Syria, and Observer Group Lebanon, supporting the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL).
The first Canadians to serve with UNTSO deployed in 1954, making Operation JADE Canadas longest-running overseas commitment.
Origins of UNTSO
In November 1947, the U.N. General Assembly endorsed a plan for the partition of Palestine that would create separate Arab and Jewish states, leading to the proclamation of the State of Israel on 14 May 1948 and the immediate opening of hostilities against Israel by Palestinian Arabs and the neighbouring states of Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Trans-Jordan and Yemen.
On 29 May 1948, the United Nations Security Council issued Resolution 50, calling for an immediate ceasefire and appointing a mediator, Count Folke Bernadotte of Wisborg, to negotiate a truce. Count Bernadotte was to be accompanied by a group of unarmed military observers, who would monitor compliance with the terms of the ceasefire. The first group of UNMOs arrived in the Middle East in June 1948, and UNTSO began to take shape.
In August 1949, under the authority of U.N. Security Council Resolution 73, UNTSOs tasks were aligned with the separate formal armistice agreements Israel entered into with its immediate neighbours: Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.
On 30 June 2012, UNTSO employed 142 military observers from 24 countries.
UNTSO has its headquarters at Government House in Jerusalem, from which it deploys UNMOs to its Observer Groups and Liaison Offices.
Observer Group Golan, which is divided between Tiberias, Israel and Damascus, Syria, supports UNDOF on the Golan Heights.
Observer Group Lebanon, headquartered at Naqoura, Lebanon, supports UNIFIL.
UNTSO also maintains a presence in Egypt and the Sinai Peninsula with a Liaison Office located in Ismailia, Egypt.
Government of Canada
Canada and the Middle East Peace Process (Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada)
United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (U.N. site)
United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (U.N. site)
United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (U.N. site)
United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (Mission site)
United Nations Security Council Resolution 50 (1948) 29 May 1948
United Nations Security Council Resolution 73 (1949) 11 August 1949
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