Exercise Flintlock 2022 to begin in Cote d’Ivoire


Ten countries will take part in the combined military and law enforcement Exercise Flintlock 2022 next week in Cote d’Ivoire.

Over 400 service members from African and allied nations will join in the exercise between 15 and 28 February, the US military’s Africa Command (Africom) said.

The annual Flintlock exercise has been running since 2005 and is Africa Command’s largest annual special operations exercise (it did not take place in 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic).

The exercise is designed to strengthen the ability of key partner nations in the region to counter violent extremist organizations, collaborate across borders, and provide security for their people, Africom said. “The willingness of Cote d’Ivoire to host this year’s exercise reflects the dedication by African partners to address regional challenges. Additionally, the exercise bolsters partnerships between African, US, and international military and law enforcement organizations, increasing interoperability during crises and operations to increase security and stability.”

Participating African nations include Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Niger. International participants include Canada, France, the Netherlands, Norway, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Flintlock reflects a mutual commitment to countering malign activity and violent extremism throughout the Sahel, Africom said.

“While regional security is the focus of the exercise, lessons learned and shared at Flintlock will create lasting effects beyond North and West Africa. Malign actors and terrorists who seek to expand their influence here also threaten stability throughout the world. By bringing together the considerable talent of African and international partners, we are collectively stronger and more capable of solving the foundational issues affecting regional and global stability,” the command said.