What is the name of the new medal?
The South-West Asia Service Medal.
Why was this medal created?
This medal was created to recognize the service of any person enrolled in, attached to or working with the Canadian Forces deployed outside Canada and participating in or providing direct support to operations against terrorism in South-West Asia after September 11, 2001.
What is the design of the Medal and Bar?
It is a circular medal, silver in colour, 36 mm in diameter and suspended from a ribbon. The obverse of the medal bears the effigy of Her Majesty the Queen of Canada, wearing the King George IV State Diadem, with the inscriptions Elizabeth II, Dei Gratia Regina and Canada. The reverse bears the representation of Hydra, a multi-headed creature of Greek mythology, transfixed by a Canadian sword. The Latin phrase Adversus Malum Pugnamus (we are fighting evil) also appears on the reverse.
The Bar of the Medal is also silver in colour and bears the name "AFGHANISTAN."
What is the design of the Ribbon?
The ribbon from which the Medal is suspended is 32 mm in width with a white stripe in the middle (12 mm), on either side of which are stripes of black (4 mm), red (2 mm) and sand (4 mm). The black stripe represents the shock of the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001 and the mourning for the victims of the attacks and of the following antiterrorist operations. The sand stripe represents the challenges of the theatre of operations and the white stripe is for peace, the ultimate aim of the operation. The red stripe is for the blood that has been spilled in the service of peace. The red and white stripes also reflect the colours of Canada.
What are the criteria for selection for the Medal?
People enrolled in, attached to or working with the Canadian Forces and who were posted, attached to, or working with a Canadian or allied unit or formation deployed outside Canada that was participating in, or providing direct support on a full time basis to operations conducted against terrorism in South-West Asia for a period of at least 90 days after September 11, 2001.
What are the criteria for selection for the Medal and Bar?
Recipients of the medal may be awarded the Bar if the have served for a period of at least 30 days while deployed in the theatre of operations after September 11, 2001.
What are the regions comprised in the theatre of operations in South-West Asia?
Afghanistan, other unnamed Gulf States, the Persian Gulf, the Gulf of Oman, the Gulf of Aden, the Red Sea, the Suez Canal and those parts of the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea that are west of sixty-eight degrees East longitude and north of five degrees South latitude, as well as the airspace.
What if a person dies or is injured before completing the minimum service stated in the criteria?
Anyone who dies or is evacuated from the theatre of operations because of injuries or medical reasons directly attributable to service is deemed to have completed the minimum service.
Will the service counted for this medal also count toward any other Canadian or foreign award?
It will not be counted for any other Canadian or foreign award.
How will the recipients be selected?
All those who meet the qualifying criteria will be awarded the medal. The Chief of the Defence Staff will forward a list of persons who are eligible to the award of the Medal or the Medal and Bar to the Governor General.
What is the Medal position in the Order of Precedence?
The Medal comes after the Somalia Medal.
How many medals will be awarded?
The nominal roll for recipients is still being composed, and until operations are completed in the Operational Area, a final tally is impossible. At this point in time, we estimate that approximately 7,000 personnel currently qualify for the medal.