All reserve forces participating in Exercise “QUICK RESPONSE 2016” were successfully deployed to Bosnia and Herzegovina and received at Camp Butmir, Sarajevo.
Many convoys have transited through BiH over the previous days demonstrating EUFOR’s ability to move troops quickly throughout the country. The UK deployed by air using an Antonov 124 cargo aircraft for strategic lift in to Sarajevo airport. EUFOR proving they can call in robust forces at short notice, as required.
Meanwhile all units, namely EUFOR’s Multi-National Battalion, a company from the Armed Forces Bosnia and Herzegovina, KFOR’s Tactical Manoeuvre Battalion comprising Portuguese and Hungarian troops and the British Intermediate Reserve Company deployed discretely to the large regional exercise area in Manjača near Banja Luka. Over 750 soldiers and 70 supporting vehicles are now based in the tented city and in the AFBiH’s Mika Bosnic barracks.
The Forward Operating Base (FOB), built by an Austrian Engineering Company, is now fully prepared for the co-ordination of exercise tasking by the EUFOR Exercise Control Team. This FOB will host all of the soldiers and contain the MNBN operations centre.
During the first stage of the exercise the different units conducted internal training at platoon, company and battalion level. During the second phase all troops were united to a multi-national Brigade, which is currently training and reacting to tasking and incidents injected by the Exercise Control Team. With a Brigade sized force, EUFOR is able to complete the larger enhanced scenarios delegated to them. Reconnaissance and surveillance of wide areas has been carried out by all elements.
One of the key outcomes of QUICK RESPONSE 2016 is to allow EUFOR and all contributing nations to be able to conduct larger Brigade Level Peace Support Operations both home and overseas should they be called upon.
EUFOR Operation Althea is currently made up of soldiers from 15 EU member states and 5 partner nations. Its primary roles are to provide capacity building and training support to the Armed Forces of BiH, to gain advanced capabilities to operate at Brigade level. This in turn enabling AFBiH to contribute to Peace Support Operations both home and overseas and to the overall EU comprehensive strategy for BiH.
Spokesperson EUFOR: Lt Cdr C. Harwood RN
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Spokesperson MOD Bosnia and Herzegovina: Uma Sinanovic
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