Marines and sailors originally with 3rd Battalion, 8th Marine Regiment out of Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, arrived at Naval Air Station Sigonella, Italy, this month to assume the new rotation of Special-Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Africa.
The soldiers arrived on January 8 and within their first week aboard the air station, the Marines of SP-MAGTF Africa 14 conducted a transfer-of-authority with their predecessors, trained together on a three-mile motivational run, and met with Maj. Gen. Raymond C. Fox, the commander of U.S. Marine Forces Africa.
Established in 2011, the task force is charged with supporting U.S. Africa Command and Marine Corps Forces Africa’s theater security cooperation requirements to strengthen the defense capabilities of partner states and regional organizations, deter and defeat transnational threats, and strengthen the ability to conduct good governance and development, US Africom said.
“Our goal is to enhance the defense capabilities of African nations, leading to better regional stability,” said Lt. Col. Trevor Hall, the commanding officer of SP-MAGTF Africa 14. “In addition, it’s imperative that we seek to strengthen our working relationships with the partner-nation militaries to ensure enduring partnerships.”
This rotation is the first iteration to be sourced by an active duty unit. Previously, the task force was manned with Marines from various units within the Marine Corps Forces Reserve.