Harper's Arctic tour starts Monday
Prime Minister Stephen Harper will be touring Canada's three territories next week, as part of his government's efforts to assert the country's sovereignty in the Far North.
Officials with the Prime Minister's Office released details on Friday about Harper's five-day tour, which will be his third trip to the North, after making similar tours in 2008 and 2009.
"The North has shaped our culture and our character. Our history is deeply intertwined with the experiences of those who have taken on the great challenges of this land, and our future is tied to our ability and willingness to cherish and defend these lands," Dmitri Soudas, Harper's director of communications, told reporters Friday in Ottawa.
"We must never forget that there are other nations who aggressively promote their interests in the Arctic and even when they conflict with our own."
Harper's latest tour will start Monday in Churchill, Man., where he will make an announcement shortly after noon local time.
On Tuesday, he will travel aboard a Hercules CC-130 aircraft to Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, where he will make an announcement before heading farther north to Resolute, where Canadian Forces are carrying out an annual Arctic sovereignty exercise, Operation Nanook.
In Resolute, he will spend Wednesday addressing troops participating in Operation Nanook, then take part in a mock fuel leak containment exercise before meeting with local elders and leaders.
Harper will fly west Wednesday afternoon to Inuvik, N.W.T., and from there travel to nearby Tuktoyaktuk, N.W.T., for an announcement Thursday morning.
The prime minister will wrap up his northern tour Thursday and Friday in Whitehorse, where he will make an announcement Friday morning before returning to Ottawa.