Ex Justified Accord underway in Kenya

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Justified Accord 2024 (JA24) is US Africa Command’s (Africom’s) largest exercise in East Africa, running from 26 February to 7 March 2024 under the leadership of US Army Southern European Task Force, Africa (SETAF-AF), and hosted in Kenya. This year’s exercise brings together a thousand personnel and units from 23 nations.

The multinational exercise builds readiness for the US joint force, prepares regional partners for United Nations (UN) and African Union (AU) mandated missions and increases multinational inter-operability in support of humanitarian assistance, disaster response and crisis response, Africom said.

JA24 features staff officer academics, including a women, peace and security panel, rule of law instruction and a command post exercise, in Nairobi. At the Nanyuki-based Counter Insurgency, Terrorism and Stability Operations (CITSO) centre, the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) is hosting a multinational field training exercise, urban operations training, as well as a medical civic action programme, providing medical care to up to 1 000 rural Kenyans.

“JA24 showcases the desire of US and partner nations to increase readiness and inter-operability when it comes to regional security and crisis response,” said F Austin Blessard, SETAF-AF lead exercise planner.

US Army forward deployed units participating in the exercise include the Massachusetts National Guard; US Army Reserve units, including the 772nd Military Police Company, 645th Regional Support Group and 635th Movement Control Team; 2nd Security Forces Assistance Brigade; 720th Explosive Ordnance Disposal Detachment and the 7th Army Training Command. The 2SFAB (Second Security Force Assistance Brigade) will partner with the United Kingdom (UK) 11th SFAB (Irish Guards) providing tactical expertise to a multinational team from Kenya, Djibouti, Somalia and Tanzania.

Additionally, the National Guard Bureau’s state partnership programme (SPP) will feature throughout JA24. Soldiers from the Massachusetts National Guard share an SPP relationship with the KDF dating back to 2015.

Massachusetts National Guard soldiers will exchange best practices with Kenyan forces in CITSO, to enhance policing skills with M4 carbine rifles and non-lethal weapons utilised during crisis response scenarios.

“Participation in regional security and crisis response exercises demonstrates our commitment to our partner nations,” said US Army Second Lieutenant Alex Machado, platoon leader, 772nd Military Police Company, Massachusetts National Guard. “As part of an overseas deployment for training, the 772nd MP company has an opportunity to conduct integrated, joint collective training with the KDF military police. Together, we are able to demonstrate capabilities and exchange best practices in a dynamic environment. We are grateful for the professionalism of the KDF and the use of their superb training sites.”

SETA-AF provides Africom and US Army Europe and Africa a dedicated headquarters to synchronise activities in Africa with scalable crisis response options in Africa and Europe, it said.