Angola and Serbia tightening defence cooperation

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The fourth Angola-Serbia Defense Cooperation Committee met in the Angolan capital Luanda between 11 and 13 June, when a number of agreements were reached.

Attendees included Angolan Secretary of State for Material Resources and Infrastructure of the Ministry of National Defense Afonso Carlos Neto and Serbian Secretary of State, Aleksandar Zivkovic. They discussed enhancing bilateral defence cooperation within existing frameworks and Zivkovic said his party had proposed an agreement on confidential data exchanges and protection, as well as cooperation in security services and counter-terrorism, while another official detailed they had discussed promoting cooperation and exchange in the fields of science and military economy.

However, it appears the primary focus of the meeting was military training, especially in medical areas. It was proposed that at least twenty-five cadets from the Angolan Armed Forces (FAA) would be trained in this field in Serbia in 2019, commencing in January. The two countries are apparently keen on building a partnership in this domain: in December last year they took part in exercises in Angola, together with the US armed forces, in order to improve the diagnosis and treatment of infectious and endemic diseases such as malaria, dengue, chikungunya, zika, leptospirosis and cholera on the battlefield.

The Serbian-Angolan partnership also spans in the field of military overhaul. According to local press reports, Jomil Group, a Serbian maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) specialist, has some 100 workers (representing half its staff) in Angola, working on the maintenance of tanks, aircraft and helicopters. Indeed, Serbia has solid experience in the servicing of Angolan T-72s (Angola operates 20 of them) as well as in building repair facilities and barracks to overhaul military equipment. Jomil Group management are apparently also building a stadium with a capacity of 25 000 in Lunda.



Written by ADIT – The Bulletin and republished with permission.