Austrian Staff-Officers Supported Exercise in Eastern Africa
In November, the "Standby High Readiness Brigade for United Nations Operations" (SHIRBRIG) participated in an exercise at the International Mines Action Training Centre in Nairobi, Kenya, in support of the "Eastern Africa Standby Brigade".
Regional Security Force
The purpose of the exercise was to test the readiness of the regional force towards the operationalisation of the African Standby Force. It was a crucial step towards forming a regional force that can quickly deploy to take on security, humanitarian and other crises.
Mentoring, Coaching and Advice
A dozen members of SHIRBRIG led by Colonel Christof Tatschl, the Austrian Chief of Staff, supported this exercise with mentoring and coaching headquarters staff, providing advice to the planning staff and with evaluating each aspect of this exercise.
Shared Experience and Expertise
"SHIRBRIG has provided tremendous and well appreciated assistance since the early stages of the planning of this exercise", said Brigadier General Frank Kamanzi, director of the exercise. "The most significant contribution of SHIRBRIG's members has been to share their experience and expertise in making this exercise successful."
Part of the African Standby Force
"Without our partners' support, we would not have been able to hold the exercise this year", said Brigadier General Salimou Amiria, chairman of the Chiefs of Defence Staff of the Eastern Africa region. The regional brigade brought together 13 East African countries and is part of the African Standby Force, which is also comprised of standby brigades from the four other regions of the continent, namely, Southern, Northern, Western and Central Africa.
Field Training Exercise in 2009
For the Eastern Africa region, this exercise is considered even more fundamental because its success will ensure the necessary validation and it will provide the monentum for the forthcoming field training exercise scheduled for the end of 2009.