KDF, police and prisons officers in Tanzania for counter-terrorism training

More than 50 Kenyan military, police and prisons officers are taking part in EAC military skills exchange program on counter terrorism and disaster management in Tanzania.

The two-week Command Post Exercise dubbed "Ushirikiano Imara 2017" at the Tanzania Peace Training Centre in Dar es Salaam began on Monday and ends on December 17.

It is based on a disaster management, peace support operations and counter terrorism and piracy.

The exercise is aimed at bringing together the military, police and civilian authorities from six EAC Partner States in planning, developing strategies and conducting activities for mitigating crisis.

The joint training of more than 300 officers was officially opened on Thursday [today].

The Kenyan delegation also has civilian staffers from the Interior and Foreign Affairs ministries, the Kenya Maritime Authority and the National Disaster Operation Centre.

Read: KDF troops in Jordan for Swift Eagle 2017 military training

The exercise that began in 2011 is conducted by the EAC partner states pursuant to the EAC Protocol on cooperation in defence affairs.

The areas of cooperation in the Protocol comprise of four pillars: military training, joint operations, technical cooperation and visits and exchange of information.

The Kenyan contingent is led by KDF Chief of Training Brigadier Charles Kangethe and his deputy Brigadier Geoffrey Auma.

Chief of Defence Forces General Samson Mwathethe was represented by Kenya Navy commander Major General Levi Mghalu at the opening ceremony.

Tanzania's Defence Minister Hussein Ali Mwinyi, said the joint exercise enables members of the Defence Forces in EAC states to share knowledge and skills in matters pertaining to defence and security.

He said this increases each state's ability to discharge their responsibilities.

"Currently, the security challenges facing one partner state are almost the same and in some cases they are hatched from the same source given the geographical settings we are in," Mwinyi said.

"Therefore sharing knowledge and experience becomes a crucial objective to enhance peace and stability in our region and beyond."

This is the tenth of such exercise to be conducted by EAC Partner States since 2005, before it was renamed Ushirikiano Imara in 2011 and it is held on a rational basis among the EAC Partner States.

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