On 28 May 2016, fifteen Ukrainian operators passed the first advanced Improvised Explosive Device Disposal (IEDD) course offered by the Canadian Armed Forces since the start of Operation UNIFIER.

The key element in ordnance disposal is and always will be safety, the immediate safety of the operators, their comrades in arms and the neighbouring population in the presence of a very real and lethal threat. When we neutralize an explosive device by destroying it, we do it effectively and safely, but we do it to the detriment of a comprehensive analysis that might yield invaluable information. During the advanced IEDD operator course, the elements of analysis and prevention are taken to a higher level.

The Canadian explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) operators deployed to the Kamyanets-Podilsky Demining Centre in Ukraine as part of Operation UNIFIER are charged with training the instructional cell and the combat engineers from the Centre’s operational detachments. Their goal is to teach the Ukrainians methods and procedures for neutralizing ordnance similar to those used by NATO countries so they can share and put into practice their new knowledge.

The importance of the procedures was highlighted by Lieutenant-colonel Tim Arsenault, Commander Joint Task Force Ukraine, during the graduation parade: “Trust in the procedures, trust in what you’ve learned, and use the material at your disposal. This is essential for you and the people around you. It might not only save your life but…

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