Details/Information for Canadian Forces (CF) Operation AMBER FOX

CF Overseas Operations have most often operated within the construct of an international mandate. As such, the International Information is presented first in order to provide the context of the Canadian Operation (displayed second). Eventually, all rotations associated with the particular Canadian operation will also be displayed.


International Information

International Operation Name: Operation AMBER FOX

International Mission Name: Operation AMBER FOX

Mandating Organization: North Atlantic Treaty Organisation

Region Name: Europe

Location: Macedonia

Mission Date: 27 September 2001 - 15 December 2002

Mission Mandate: To contribute to the protection of international monitors from the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), who are overseeing the implementation of the peace plan in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

Mission/Operation Notes:

Throughout the 1990s, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) managed to avoid much of the bloodshed that plagued the other former Yugoslav republics. Still, the FYROM remained internally divided between its Macedonian (Slav) majority and its ethnic Albanian minority. Tensions between the two groups erupted into open conflict in early 2001 resulting in international pressure being brought to bear on both sides to resolve the issue. Subsequently, during the spring and summer of that year representatives of the ethnic Albanian community and the government of the FYROM negotiated the Ohrid Framework Agreement that was eventually signed on 13 August.

In concert with the negotiations, the President of the FYROM sent a letter in June to NATO requesting military aid to help stabilize the situation in his country. This request resulted in NATO proposing a two-phase plan under which a 30-day arms collection operation would be followed by a monitoring operation. Following the signing of the Framework Agreement in early August, Operation ESSENTIAL HARVEST - the mission to collect arms from Albanian paramilitary groups - was launched on 27 August. One month later, following the successful completion of its mandate, on 26 September 2001 the North Atlantic Council issued an Execution Directive authorizing the release of the Activation order for the monitoring operation under the designation Operation AMBER FOX.

The mission officially started on 27 September 2001 with an initial three-month mandate that was subsequently extended a further year to 15 December 2002. The operation’s mandate was to contribute to the protection of international monitors from the European Union (EU), and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), who were overseeing the implementation of the peace plan in the FYROM. The operation consisted of approximately 700 troops from NATO member countries, which reinforced some 300 troops already based in the country.

In response to a further request, the North Atlantic Council agreed to continue supporting the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia with a new mission following the successful completion of Operation AMBER FOX. From 16 December 2002 until 30 March 2003 Operation ALLIED HARMONY, a significantly smaller operation in which Canada did not participate, was designed to carry on the peacekeeping operations of the previous two operations, and assist the government of FYROM in taking ownership of security throughout the country. On 31 March 2003, this operation formally handed responsibility over to European Union.

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Canadian Forces (CF) Information (AMBER FOX)


Date: 27 September 2001 - 1 October 2002

CF Mission/Operation Notes:

Canada’s contribution to Operation AMBER FOX was one staff officer to work at Task Force Headquarters. This commitment began on 27 September 2001 and came to an end at the end of September 2002.