US-Ethiopia Military Exercise ‘Empowers Peacekeeping Operations in Africa’

ADDIS ABEBA – The joint military exercises, that took place in Ethiopia last month, has helped to strengthen peacekeeping operations in Africa and beyond, said United states ambassador to Ethiopia.

The U.S. military and the Ethiopian National Defense Force, in cooperation with other partner nations, concluded their exercise Justified Accord 2019 (JA19) on July 30.

The closing event was held at the Peace Support Training Center in Addis Ababa.

“Events like this exercise have a positive global impact,” U.S. Ambassador Michael Raynor said in a statement sent to The Daily Monitor.

“They support the United Nations and African Union as they carry out their mandates to support security in the region,” he said, “And they bring us closer to our common goal: a more peaceful and prosperous Africa and world.”

Justified Accord is a U.S. Army Africa-led 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).

Over 1,000 military and government personnel from Brazil, Burundi, Canada, Djibouti, Ethiopia, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Somalia, Uganda, the United Kingdom, and the United States participated in Justified Accord, which took place between July 15 and July 30.

The exercise took place in two locations in Ethiopia: Addis Ababa, where the command post exercise took place, and the Hurso Training Center, near Dire Dawa, where the field training exercise occurred.

The command post exercise in Addis Ababa started with a series of academic classes and ended with a cumulative exercise that was designed to test the interoperability of the troop-contributing nations to AMISOM.

During the field level exercise, U.S. soldiers from infantry, military police, explosive ordnance disposal and engineering units worked with the Ethiopian National Defence Force (ENDF) through different situational training exercises to better enhance field capabilities and strengthen relationships with the ENDF.

“Ethiopia and the United States have longstanding peacekeeping experience,” said Brigadier General Habtamu Tilahun, Commander of ENDF Force Peacekeeping Center and exercise co-director.

“The skills and knowledge gained in this training arm them with high-level military and tactical knowledge and skill to overcome current complex peacekeeping problems,” he added.

Photo Caption: U.S. Army Soldiers assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment navigate a low-water crossing with members of the Ethiopian National Defence Force during a cordon & search training exercise at the Hurso Training Center near Dire Dawa, Ethiopia (Photo US Embassy)