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4 mars 2015 3 04 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
Amani Africa ll work session

Amani Africa ll work session


04 March 2015 by Kim Helfrich – defenceWeb


Lesotho’s political instability has seen South Africa step into the breach to host the next stage of preparation for the much delayed African Standby Force (ASF).


The field training exercise Amani Africa ll was originally supposed to have been hosted by Lesotho last October but this was put on hold as a result of political turmoil in that country. South Africa was proposed and accepted as an alternate venue.


This saw a four day long technical work session at the Army College in Thaba Tshwane. It started last Thursday and ended on Tuesday.


A core planning team composed of an AU (African Union) element and the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) came to South Africa’s military capital for the work session. It was led by Major General (ret) Samaila Lliya of Nigeria, Exercise Amani Africa ll Exercise Director. His support team included Brigadier General Paulo Francisco of Angola, Amani Africa ll Chief of Staff.


The planning session for Amani Africa ll, set down for the SA Army Combat Training Centre in October/November this year, was chaired by Rear Admiral (JG) Patrick Duze from the SA National Defence Force’s Joint Operations Division. SANDF officers representing the force’s arms of service and divisions also attended.


“SADC is hosting the Exercise, originally planned to have been conducted in the Kingdom of Lesotho late last year. Unfortunately, the political and security situation in Lesotho affected implementation of Exercise Amani Africa II timelines. This meant some critical activities planned for the host country to pave the way for the conduct of Amani Africa ll could not be undertaken in 2014 which necessitated a change of date,” Captain (SAN) Jaco Theunissen of Joint Operations said.


“South Africa has offered to host the Amani Africa ll field training exercise. This will pave the way for implementation of the remainder of the exercise cycle activities. SADC has requested the exercise be conducted in October/November.”


The planning session saw five main activities successfully undertaken. They were a political strategic retreat; AU, regional economic communities (RECs) and regional member states planning meeting; drafting a main events list and a main incident list; an evaluation seminar and strategic and mission headquarters training sessions.


“All objectives set for the technical work session were met and planning is well underway for a purposeful field training exercise that will be conducted efficiently and effectively,” Theunissen said adding the work session was one of the exercise activities that could not be staged in the original host country due to the unstable political situation in the mountain kingdom where voters went to the polls last week.

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5 février 2015 4 05 /02 /février /2015 19:45
South Africa to host ASF field training exercise this year


04 February 2015 by defenceWeb


South Africa will, at some time this year, host the Amani Africa ll field training exercise as part of making the AU African Standby Force (ASF) operational.


This emerged from a communique issued following the 10th meeting of the AU/UN Joint Task Force (JTF) on Peace and Security in Addis Ababa earlier this month.


“The JTF agreed to continue to co-operate in the area of peacekeeping based on the principles of shared responsibility, value addition and complementarity. In this regard, the meeting welcomed the ongoing UN review of peace operations and progress in the operationalisation of the African Standby Force (ASF) and the African Capacity for Immediate Response to Crises (ACIRC),” the communique stated.


The JTF welcomed the full operational capability reached by the East African Standby Force Co-ordinating Mechanism (EASFCOM) in November last year.


It also welcomed steps taken towards making the African Capacity for Immediate Response to Crises (ACIRC) operational and what the JTF termed, “the ongoing process of harmonisation of both concepts”.


“All concerned are encouraged to take the necessary steps to ensure the full operational capability for the ASF is achieved by 2015,” the communique said, adding there was a need for sustained and focused international support for both forces.


“The JTF agreed to work towards the successful holding of the Amani Africa ll field training exercise in South Africa in the course of 2015 and other related activities as well as intensifying strategic and institutional engagement toward enhanced co-ordinated support.”


The Amani Africa ll field exercise was originally to have been hosted by Lesotho last year but was delayed following political upheavals. South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa heads a SADC team tasked with bringing political stability back to the landlocked kingdom. No alternative dates or venues have been given for the exercise by the AU Peace and Security Organ.

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11 octobre 2013 5 11 /10 /octobre /2013 16:45
Lesotho to host African Standby Force exercise


11 October 2013 by Kim Helfrich - defenceWeb


A planning meeting currently underway in Gaborone, Botswana, will finalise planning for a major field exercise in Lesotho next October in support of the African Standby Force’s (ASF) further development.


According to an AU statement, the three day planning conference of the Amani Africa ll field training exercise is in line with implementation of the ASF Roadmap lll.


“The overall objective of the exercise is to validate the capacity of the AU to mandate and employ a rapid deployment capability of the ASF as a start-up operation and to run a full multidimensional peace support operation,” General Sekouba Konate, AU representative for the operationalisation of the ASF said.


“By opting to equip the AU with the ASF, African leaders made a landmark decision in the light of the violent and resurgent conflicts that undermine our development efforts while taking a heavy toll in human lives.”


The Gaborone meeting is being attended by planners from the AU Commission, the regional economic communities and regional mechanisms for conflict prevention, the EU, UN and other partners.


It follows a July decision by the AU Peace and Security Council to operationalise an African Capacity for Immediate Response to Crises (ACIRC) as a precursor to the ASF. The decision was taken after an earlier meeting pointed out that lack of a force such as ACIRC could have prevented at least some of the violence that erupted in Mali in the first three months of the year.


As with the ASF, the plan is to have the ACIRC fully functional and operational by 2015.


While no details of participating countries for next year’s Lesotho exercise have yet been released, Ethiopia, South Africa and Uganda have pledged to implement the ACIRC decision.


Plans to establish the ASF have been on the AU Peace and Security Council agenda for more than a decade. AU member countries were slow in committing troops to the ASF, which officially came into being in 2007 when regional countries resolved to contribute troops to the ASG to defend member states from revolts and aggression. It was originally planned to be operational by 2010.

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