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Ethiopia, US launch joint military exercise

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Addis Ababa, July 15, 2019 (FBC) -The Ethiopia National Defense Force and the U.S. military have launched Exercise Justified Accord 2019, a command headquarter and company-level field training exercise today.

Approximately 1,100 military and government personnel from Brazil, Burundi, Canada, Djibouti, France, Germany, Italy, Kenya, Netherlands, Rwanda, Somalia, Uganda, and the UK, as well as the representatives of the international organizations are participating in the 16-day exercise.

The exercise will include headquarters staff training, land force maneuvers and culminate with a platoon-level demonstration. The exercise will increase interoperability and help participating military forces enhance readiness and the skills required to support peacekeeping operations and promote regional security.

In his remark at the ceremony held in the Peace and Support Training Center marking the beginning of the exercise, Michael Raynor, U.S. Ambassador to Ethiopia, said “The success of Justified Accord will be a direct result of your commitment and dedication, and the importance you give to regional collaboration.”

“Events like this exercise have positive global impact. They support the United Nations and African Union as they carry out their mandates to support security in the region. And they bring us closer to our common goal: a more peaceful and prosperous Africa and world.”

“Ethiopia plays an essential role in regional security. It’s the world’s largest contributor to global peacekeeping forces, and an essential partner in security cooperation efforts in the Horn of Africa, and beyond.”

“Ethiopia’s commitment to promoting peace is a testament to its dedication to the principle that professional, responsible, and constructive peacekeeping and military activities can lead to a more stable, prosperous, and politically inclusive region. This makes Ethiopia a very fitting host for an exercise like Justified Accord.”

For over 20 years, the Justified Accord joint exercise has brought together East African nations, the United States, partner nations, and international organizations to strengthen relationships, increase military and inter-governmental capacity, and enhance peacekeeping capabilities, according to the Ambassador.

Fiseha Woldesenbet, Ethiopia’s State Minister of Defense, for his park remarked that the exercise would help to bring stability in the region.

Simultaneous with JA19, the US Government has begun conducting a Medical Readiness Exercise (MEDREX) 19-4, where medical military and civilian personnel from Ethiopia and the US will share and learn from each other’s medical procedures and best practices to build and strengthen their medical treatment capability and capacity.

Through this program, Ethiopian medical professionals can enhance the Ethiopian healthcare system’s ability to deliver effective general surgery and trauma response in support of regional U.N. and African Union missions.

JA19 is an exercise designed to enhance the capacity and capability of participating staff and forces in peacekeeping operations in support of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

Ethiopia first hosted Justified Accord in 2017.