The U.S. military and the Ethiopian National Defence Force, in cooperation with other partner nations, successfully concluded exercise Justified Accord 2019 (JA19) on July 30, with a closing ceremony held at the Peace Support Training Center in Addis Ababa.
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).
U.S. Ambassador Michael Raynor said, “Events like this exercise have positive global impact. They support the United Nations and African Union as they carry out their mandates to support security in the region. And they bring us closer to our common goal: a more peaceful and prosperous Africa and world.”
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.
Brigadier General Habtamu Tilahun, Commander of the Ethiopian National Defence Force Peacekeeping Center and exercise co-director, stated at the closing ceremony, “Ethiopia and the United States have longstanding peacekeeping experience, and 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.”
Brigadier General Lapthe C. Flora, the U.S. Army Africa deputy commanding general and JA19 co-director, highlighted, “I cannot overemphasize the importance of exercises like Justified Accord. They not only contribute to the readiness of African nations and peacekeeping operations, but they also provide valuable opportunities to work together and create professional relationships and friendships.”