PRISTINA – More than 200 KFOR Soldiers with 50 vehicles and 2 multi-role helicopters took part to an exercise aimed at rehearsing the management of emergency situations and the applicable command & control and communications procedures between the units.
The exercise, called "Western Storm", was organized by the Italian-led Regional Command West and was conducted at Gjakova/Djakovica airfield. It consisted of realistic simulations of crowd and riot control and military personnel evacuation which were performed by Soldiers from Italy, Poland, Hungary, Austria, Moldova, Slovenia and Turkey.
Units from KFOR Regional Commands, the Tactical Reserve Battalion and the Multinational Specialized Unit were involved in the training, which included four phases: aerial surveillance, establishment of cordons and observation points, insertion of helicopter-borne troops and evacuation of personnel amidst riots.
Major General Michele Risi, the Commander of KFOR, observed the exercise along with representatives of the European mission EULEX and the Kosovo Police, together with Colonel Eric Riley and Colonel Gianluca Figus, who respectively lead KFOR Regional Commands East and West.
The NATO-led KFOR mission is the third security responder after the Kosovo Police and EULEX and is regularly conducting exercises with all its units to maintain a high level of readiness, in order to fulfil its mission of contributing to safe and secure environment and freedom of movement for all citizens in Kosovo, as mandated by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244.