By By Sgt. M. Benjamin GableApril 6, 2011
CAMP ARIFJAN, Kuwait - Members of Third Army's explosive ordnance disposal team participated in a three-day information exchange with military professionals from the Kyrgyzstan Republic Ministry of Defense Batken Battalion in Batken, Kyrgyzstan, beginning March 29.
"There is a significant increase in EOD awareness as a result of our multiple EOD exchanges," said Lt. Col. Frank Davis, Third Army EOD officer.
The event focused on improvised explosive device awareness and search, IED threats and ammunition markings and classifications. The information exchange also included IED lane training and practical exercises.
This was the sixth such event between Third Army and Kyrgyzstan since July 2009. Four of the previous five events were held in the United States and one at Manas Transit Center near Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Six Kyrgyzstan EOD soldiers participating in this event have taken part in multiple Third Army information exchanges.
More than 30 Kyrgyzstan EOD soldiers participated in the important events that focus on expanding relationships with partner-nations and shaping future conditions in Third Army's area of responsibility.
Third Army and Kyrgyzstan EOD soldiers also covered unexploded ordnance safety and tips as well as practical exercises. The Kyrgyzstan EOD soldiers worked in groups of five to discuss IED search techniques and search lanes during the training.
"The teams of Kyrgyzstan soldiers were very enthusiastic and did a great job working together," said Davis. "They are looking forward to more advanced instruction and hands-on training with equipment."
The Kyrgyzstan EOD leadership will use information garnered from past information exchanges and lessons learned during the Global Explosive Ordnance Disposal Conference & Exhibition scheduled for May. The purpose of the conference is to provide a public forum to discuss the utility of Army, Navy, Marine, and Air Force EOD Forces across the full spectrum of conflict - particularly in the areas of homeland defense, irregular warfare, stability operations, security force assistance and major combat operations.
Third Army and Kyrgyzstan EOD soldiers plan to participate in future multi-lateral events to showcase their combined capabilities. These information exchanges ensure Third Army is always mission-ready.