KAMPALA, Uganda -- The second biennial African Land Forces Summit came to a close, May 18, in a ceremony in Uganda's capital of Kampala.

The Ugandan Peoples Defence Force, along with U.S Army Africa hosted ALFS, a biennial conference bringing together senior army officers from 36 African nations with their counterparts from the U.S. Army.

Initiated in 2010, the theme of this year's Summit was "The strength of an army; for the nation and its people." During the Summit, army commanders met to solidify relationships, exchange information on topics of mutual interest and seek cooperation in addressing common security challenges.

Regional states best understand regional problems, said Ugandan People's Defence Force Gen. Aronda Nyakairima. He stressed the importance of this type of conference and praised the land force chiefs for their participation.

"We need strength and cooperation to secure the continent," he said.

Part of that cooperation was learning about the issues effecting neighboring nations and educating each other. Africa's newest nation, South Sudan, is facing complex challenges as the government is establishing.