EOD partners with Allied Forces for KFOR 26 Rotation
1 / 6 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army 702nd Explosive Ordnance Disposal Staff Sgt. Matthew Eissler and Moldovan Sgt. Taras Dorin, EOD team member, observes and assists Moldovan Cpl. Placinta Valentin as he controls the PacBot 5-10 to pick up an object in preparation for the KFO... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
EOD partners with Allied Forces for KFOR 26 Rotation
2 / 6 Show Caption + Hide Caption – The Latvian operated Telemax Telerob reaches the second floor in an Explosive Ordnance Disposal training exercise in preparation for the Kosovo Force 26 rotation, at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany Jun. 24, 2019. The EO... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
EOD partners with Allied Forces for KFOR 26 Rotation
3 / 6 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Latvian Explosive Ordnance Disposal team member, Sgt. 1st Class Guntars Jerums observes the Telemax Telerob as it prepares to cut a wire at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, June 24, 2019. The exercise was part of a join... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
EOD partners with Allied Forces for KFOR 26 Rotation
4 / 6 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army 702nd Explosive Ordnance Disposal Sgt. Bradley Houston points to a hidden object found by the Minehound in a training exercise with the Moldovan Army in preparation for the KFOR 26 rotation to Kosovo, at the Joint Multinational Readiness Ce... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
EOD partners with Allied Forces for KFOR 26 Rotation
5 / 6 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army 702nd Explosive Ordnance Disposal Spc. George Purdy shares knowledge regarding use of EOD equipment with Kosovo EOD at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany June 24, 2019. Purdy, and the 702nd Task Force EOD, assign... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL
EOD partners with Allied Forces for KFOR 26 Rotation
6 / 6 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army 702nd Explosive Ordnance Disposal Spc. George Purdy observes Moldovan EOD team member, Cpl. Placinta Valentin as he controls the PacBot 5-10 to pick up an object in preparation for the KFOR 26 rotation to Kosovo, at the Joint Multinational ... (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

HOHENFELS, Germany - Grafenwoehr, Germany 702nd Explosive Ordnance Disposal Soldiers along with EOD teams from Latvia, Moldova and Kosovo conducted mission rehearsal exercises at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center in Hohenfels, Germany, June 24, 2019.

Task Force EOD officer-in-charge, 2nd Lt. Kevin Ray, says the role of 702nd EOD in Kosovo during the KFOR 26 rotation is participating in the coordination of EOD responses in Multinational Battle Group East. EOD protects personnel and property, by enabling a safe and secure environment and creating freedom of movement for the people.

In some cases, the U.S. may take a primary position in the response to items found within a certain distance of the administrative boundary line. In other situations, Kosovo's EOD may take the lead or operate independently.

Ray says that joint training exercises allow troops to fine-tune techniques and ultimately make everyone on the battlefield safer by expanding each-others' knowledge.

"In joint exercises, the main value we get is to learn from them, and they get to learn from us," Ray said. "There's a different way to do everything."

EOD teams went through exercises showing different scenarios including: finding unexploded ordnance with detection equipment, as well as controlling robots through various obstacles such as climbing stairs and opening doors.

Ray says he enjoys working with the other countries EOD assets, especially due to the different equipment and knowledge the Moldovans, Latvians and the Kosovans bring to the mission.

"I think one of the coolest parts about EOD is the brotherhood," Ray said. "We have a mutual understanding and a mutual respect for each other that is rare and something I've really come to appreciate."

JMRC Raptor Team, SFC Randon Sander says identifying strengths and weakness early in team and country integration is important to mission success.

"Some of our equipment is going to be different and some of our capabilities are different," Sander said. "The sooner we can recognize what those differences are, the sooner we can develop a plan to overcome them."

In joint operation missions, Sander says it's critical to work hand-in-hand with the local forces to gain knowledge of the culture and work together to accomplish the mission.

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