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Posted: January 13, 2016 5:55 p.m.
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‘Warrior Diplomats’ support Chad MINUSMA training

Photo by Master Sgt. Kirk Scott/

Capt. Randy Coggin, 82nd CA Bn. team leader, demonstrates how to refuse an unlawful order while emphasizing the rights of detainees.

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A four-man team from the U.S. Africa Command regionally aligned 82nd Civil Affairs Battalion deployed to Chad, Africa, to teach Universal Human Rights to the Chadian National Army in December.

The training the 82nd CA Battalion conducted helped prepare the Chad military for their upcoming United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission, also called MINUSMA, in Mali, Africa. The Chadian Battalion will support the transitional authorities of Mali in the stabilization of the country with a mission focus on duties such as providing security, stabilization and protection of civilians as they support the reconciliation and reestablishment of the government’s authority. As one of Africa’s leading contributors to regional security operations, they will continue to promote the protection of human rights in Mali.

The team began preparing for this mission in October 2015 by arranging meetings with experts in the field of international human rights. The team first met with a professor of Human Rights from Savannah State University. The team also traveled to Fort Benning, Georgia, where they received additional Human Rights training at the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation.

WHINSEC is the premiere training facility for western hemisphere partner nations to receive training on topics ranging from human rights to leadership.

The 82nd CA Battalion partnered with a team from the 788th Explosive Ordnance Disposal stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, to provide two weeks of training to a 500-man Chadian unit. When the Civil Affairs Team and EOD team arrived at the Chadian training site, the training commandant and unit leadership warmly welcomed them.

The two teams split the nearly 500 man MINUSMA Battalion into two training groups and worked together to teach human rights and counter Improvised Explosive Device tasks. The 82nd Civil Affairs team taught human rights in both French and Chadian Arabic, through the use of several interpreters.

Training was a success as the team was able to impart a sense of respect and understanding for Universal Human Rights as the Chadian Soldiers were eager to learn and participate in the training. Upon concluding the training each day, the teams were able to develop friendships with the Soldiers of the MINUSMA Battalion. The teams often shared local meals together, such as freshly caught Goliath Tiger fish, cow stomach and sheep’s head.

The Warrior Diplomats conducted a successful hand-off with 1/30th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, who recently provided the training with the same Chad MINUSMA Battalion. The CA team had a great experience in Chad and helped to develop long lasting relationships. Most importantly, the CA team increased the readiness of the Chadian MINUSMA Battalion and helped the regionally aligned forces of 1/30th Inf. Regt. navigate the complexities of African culture.

 


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