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Naval Boarding Parties

The Royal Canadian Navy follows Canadian government support for international maritime law, and this means that RCN ships often participate in operations that involve countering malign behaviour at sea. People smuggling, drug trafficking and sanctions violations means taking a closer look at ships in certain areas. Boarding parties can be authorized to search a ship and its cargo in a search for drugs, weapons, or passengers who are traveling in contravention of international law and/or the ship’s manifest. Boarding teams routinely conduct inspections of ‘vessels of interest’ during which identities are checked and cargo inspected.

Historically, the RCN’s boarding parties have been made up of regular crew members who include this as a secondary duty. But as operations became more contested, the Maritime Tactical Operations Groups (MTOG), now called the Naval Tactical Operations Groups (NTOGs), were formed. The NTOGs consist of highly trained specialty boarding teams designed to be used on risky missions.

To learn more about naval boarding, and the NTOGs, check out the Briefing Note published by the Naval Association of Canada at BN33-NTOG.pdf (navalassoc.ca)

Link: https://www.navalassoc.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/BN33-NTOG.pdf

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