News / Africa

Police, Civilians Trained for African Standby Force

The African Union has finished a week of training in Ethiopia for members of its new African Standby Force.  The force is due to become active in 2015, though parts of it could be utilized earlier. 

More than 100 police officers and civilians from regional African institutions participated in the African Union Police and Civilian Exercise, called Njiwa, for the past eight days in Addis Ababa. These police officers and civilians are expected to further train their colleagues in their home countries and institutions.

The training focuses on conflict resolution in the fictional African country of Carana.  But there are no simulated shootouts or fighting.

Instead, the participants of Exercise Njiwa develop plans to assist Carana as it goes through an imaginary, violent crisis.

Hossan Eldin Soliman, a police officer with the United Nations Mission in Darfur, says that even though there is no field practice, the training puts them mentally in real-life situations:

"We have many requests from the government of Carana, which is the government of this mission, to assist them," he said. "We discuss this request from the government, we see how it fits with the mission mandate and then we take action in how to assist the government in the many various areas they are requesting us to do so."

The participants are split up in different teams, one focusing on rule of law, another one on the protection of civilians and the last group deals with mission management.

Kamye Arthur, a civilian, is a planning officer from Uganda.  During the exercise, he is part of the rule of law team that develops strategies and interventions.

"The scenario is in such a way that the police in this country, this hypothetical country, does not have the accurate capacity.  So what we are trying to do is we are coming up with interventions which are aimed at capacity building of the police," he said.

Raheemat Momodu, the chief of staff for the Njiwa exercise, says planners tried to create a mission environment, even though the participants are spending most of the days in meeting rooms.

"You still have information coming in, pretending that it’s a real mission with issues, with fighting going on, with criminality going on and all that," she said.

Momodu says she is pleased with the progress that has been made.  She says that Africa is doing well when it comes to military forces, but is still very weak when it comes to integrating the military with police and civilian components.

“The military is able to achieve cessation of violence.  What happens after that," she asked. "The police and the civilians we have to come and to help build that country.  So we need to really continuously build the capacity of the police and the civilians to be able to do [deal with] one of the greatest gaps on the continent, which is coordinate our own post-conflicts construction and development of post-conflict countries, which is a bit lacking now," Momodu said.

The African Standby Force is to set to become deployable by 2015.  However, General Samaila Ilya, the director of the Njiwa exercise, says the force could be active much earlier if needed.

"For example, if we have to go to Mali, in case there is any deployment that the African Union decides to put in place, we can bring some of them from part of the missions headquarters," said Ilya.

The African Union Mission in Somalia is already using several components of the Standby Force at the staff level.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More