Flintlock 2012 Exercise Postponed- (February 10, 2012 )
United States Embassy in MaliPress Release
No: BAM2012-005- Bamako, Mali, February 10, 2012
Flintlock 2012 Exercise Postponed
Flintlock 2012, the multinational military exercise scheduled for February 27 through March 18 in Mali, is postponed to a future date. Malian security forces are currently responding to attacks by armed groups within their borders.
“Mali’s participation in Flintlock 2012 is critical to its success and we understand the need to focus necessary efforts on maintaining its security,” said U.S. Ambassador to Mali Mary Beth Leonard. “As part of the original Flintlock schedule, U.S. and Malian forces had begun preparing training areas, but we are halting those efforts until such time as Mali is ready to continue moving forward.”
The Government of Mali agreed to host Flintlock 2012 in early 2011 after its participation in Flintlock 2011, hosted by Senegal. The annual exercise takes place in countries across the Sahel region of Africa and is intended to develop the capacity of and collaboration among African security forces to protect civilian populations and to secure a stable environment for growth and development.
The technical portion of the Flintlock exercise consists of training and simulations by counter-terrorism units from partner nations. For Flintlock 2012, a special emphasis has been placed on military support to humanitarian assistance operations that improve the basic medical, dental and veterinary access for a number of communities.
Exercise participants include: Mali, Burkina Faso, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Chad, Senegal, South Africa, United States, Germany, Canada, Spain, France, the Netherlands, Italy, and United Kingdom.
Atlas Accord, a smaller, bilateral exercise focusing on capacity building in aerial delivery of supplies, particularly for the provision of humanitarian assistance, will proceed as scheduled in Sevaré this week.