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Tuesday 15 to Thursday 17 November 2016 Lieutenant General Luciano Portolano, head of the EU Command Element, Allied Joint Force Command Naples, visited EUFOR in Camp BUTMIR. Upon arrival the General was welcomed by Commander EUFOR (COMEUFOR) Major General Friedrich Schrötter. COMEUFOR introduced the General to the EUFOR Senior Staff Officers after inspecting an honour guard from the Multi-National Battalion (MNBN) consisting of Austrian Soldiers.

During the three day visit Lieutenant General Portolano received briefings by the EUFOR branch Chiefs regarding the continued co-operation between NATO and EUFOR and how both parties continue developing Armed Forces BiH towards Euro-Atlantic Integration. General Portolano was able to witness first-hand the future plans for EUFOR’s continued Capacity Building and Training (CB&T) of the Armed Forces BiH. On a visit to Tuzla he was able to observe the Armed Forces BiH 5th Brigade during a table top exercise and receive a brief from 5th Brigade Chief of Staff at Camp EAGLE BASE. The General also visited EUFOR Liaison Observation Team (LOT) house Tuzla, and received briefings from the Austrian LOT Commander and their integration in to the local community.

General Portolano said, “It was a great opportunity to visit EUFOR and see the co-operation with AFBiH. These forward steps will help towards increasing peace and stability in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The training I witnessed with the AFBiH 5th Brigade proved a great working relationship with EUFOR. This continued Capacity Building and Training is two-way with AFBiH and EUFOR and I was impressed with the 5th Brigade Chief of Staff and his soldiers. ”

COMEUFOR said, “This was an important visit by the Head of the EUCE to gain a first-hand appreciation of the forces in BiH. EUFOR is committed to supporting AFBiH and integration in to Euro Atlantic constitutions. By working in partnership with NATO we can ensure a safe and secure environment exists within BiH under the Berlin Plus agreement.”

European Union Command Element (EUCE), which is located at NATO Joint Force Command (JFC) in Naples, provides the necessary coordination for ensuring a Balkans regional approach and use of any reserves, which are covered under the "Berlin Plus" arrangements.

L-R EUCE Naples Director of Staff Col Campbell, Head of EUCE Lt General Portolano, EUFOR COC Brigadier General Sáfár at EUFOR briefing

L-R EUCE Naples Director of Staff Col Campbell, Head of EUCE Lt General Portolano, EUFOR COC Brigadier General Sáfár at EUFOR briefing.
Photos: EUFOR/Weiss

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