NAPLES, Italy - At the request of African Union Peace and Security Division, Allied Joint Forces Command Naples conducted an Exercise Planning Course for participants drawn from the North African Regional Capacity African Standby Force Headquarters from June 25 to 29 June in Tunis, Tunisia.
NARC member states are Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Mauretania and Western Sahara with Tunisia currently being in the final stages of becoming a member state of the NARC.
The African Union Peace and Security Architecture foresee five Rapid Response Force Headquarters with allocated Forces comprising of the Regional Economic Communities and Regional Mechanisms. The relevance of EPC comes from the ASF training Directive-2017 where it was decreed by the AU Specialised Technical Committee on Safety and Security that regions should be rostered, on a six-month rotational basis with effect from January 1, 2017, to implement and harmonize training initiatives utilising the continental training framework. The EPC is a good venue for PSOD in achieving one of the aims articulated in Maputo 5 Year Work Plan on the enhancement of the ASF, which is to provide the need for continuous training in line with the strategic direction provided by the STCDSS.
The course was conducted by a Mobile Education and Training Team from JFC Naples. Fifteen military, police and civilian personnel from the NARC and four officers from Tunisia took part in the course and were sponsored by JFC Naples.
Preparations for the course took place in Addis Ababa, in Naples and at the training location in Tunisia and required close coordination between NATO Senior Military Liaison Office, the PSOD Capability Development Unit and the JFC Naples NATO Support to African Union Core Team. Throughout the preparation and conduct of the course, the support from the NARC Liaison Officer to the AU, AU Representative in Tunisia, the hosting Nation and the venue location was succinct.
The course started on June 25, with opening remarks from Course Director French Army Lieutenant Colonel Christophe LeCerf. The course provided students with a fundamental knowledge of the NATO Exercise Planning Process and introduced basic documents, definitions and responsibilities through plenary and syndicate sessions. During the closing ceremony AU representatives, NARC Planning Element Commander Libyan Army Brigadier General Mohammed Ashibani and participants expressed their appreciation to NATO for sponsoring and conducting the course. Ashibani thanked NATO for this great training opportunity and expressed a wish to see closer cooperation between NATO and the NARC ASF in future.
Preparations are now underway to deliver a second EPC METT to the AU in 2018. It will be conducted December 5 to 9 at the South African Development Community ASF HQ.
Story by JFC Naples J9