AFBiH 2013 Training Conference took place in Sarajevo on 13 February 2014. The AFBiH Training Conference is a regular, planned activity of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with clearly defined goals:
To present results of the training conducted in 2013 by all AFBiH command and control levels, To consider all aspects of functionality of the training process and challenges that AFBiH commands and units encounter in that process,
To define specific proposals and measures for improvement and upgrade of the training system in the AFBiH for the upcoming period.
The Conference was, among others, attended by key personnel from the Ministry of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina led by Zekerijah Osmic, the Minister of Defense. The event was, on behalf of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, attended by MG Anto Jelec, the Chief of the Joint Staff of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and his deputies: BG Mirko Tepsic and BG Senad Masovic; Commanders of the AFBiH Operations Command and Support Command namely BG Dragan Vukovic and BG Husein Tursunovic and their deputies; then brigade commanders and personnel from organizational units from Joint Staff, Operations Command, Support Command, Sergeant Majors from all commands of the Armed Forces, and officers and NCOs directly involved in the planning and conduct of training.
The presence of representatives of NATOHQ Sarajevo, HQ EUFOR, Head of the ODC Office of the US Embassy, and representatives of the diplomatic military core in Bosnia and Herzegovina demonstrate their support and assistance to Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The attendees were addressed by MG Anto Jelec, the Chief of the Joint Staff of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, who said that he expects this Conference to produce specific and concrete courses of action and clearly indicate the areas where AFBiH should put their focus in terms of training in the future period. General Jelec also pointed out that training in AFBiH produces capabilities of AFBiH commands and units to carry out the tasks prescribed by the BiH Law on Defense.
Commanders of the Operations and Support Commands of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Deputies Chief of the Joint Staff for Operations and Resources, and CSG of the Armed Forces gave briefings on the results achieved in areas of institutional, individual and collective training and exercises of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the country and abroad. The key challenges and problems that AFBiH encounters in the training system were identified, as well as concrete proposals and measures for improvement of the training system in the future.
The Commander of the AFBiH Training and Doctrine Command briefed the audience on characteristics, possibilities and advantages of the new training simulation system: JCATS (joint conflict and tactical simulation). Office of the Defense Cooperation bought this system for the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina from American partners. This simulation system shall significantly improve the possibilities in training of AFBiH commands and units in full-spectrum operations, military operations, and disaster relief operations. This system provides for other government agencies, such as police forces, civil protection agencies and fire brigades, to use it and train on it as well.
The Conference was concluded by the Minister of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina Mr. Zekerijah Osmic who stated that “training of commands and units remain priority number one and the most important task of Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina in peace time, aimed at reaching operational capabilities and readiness for execution of full-spectrum operations.” He expressed the hope that all those involved in the training, from both Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, will give their best in order to enhance the capabilities of the Armed Forces to carry out their tasks from the Law on Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially in the area of meeting NATO requirements that is necessary for AFBiH to become a full member of NATO.
In his address to media, Minister Osmic emphasized the importance of training in AFBiH and said that this Conference is important for several reasons: one being that all results achieved and lessons learned were presented, second one being that there was an open discussion about challenges in the training process, and that common and constructive discussion produced proposals for improvement and upgrade of training in 2014.
General Jelec told media that training is one of the most important priorities of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina in peace time and that the conference should not only give a comprehensive and objective analysis of training results achieved in 2013, but also establish concrete courses of action for the future period. He also pointed out that the final goal of the training is to have top trained and capable military troops, and commands and units at all command and control levels, always ready and capable to fully carry out tasks from the Law on Defense, in complex operational environments and in accordance with NATO requirements.