Southern Accord 16

Monday, August 1, 2016

What is it?

Southern Accord 2016 is an annual, combined, joint military exercise that brings together Southern African Development Community leaders, partner nations and U.S. Army Africa. Together they form a headquarters to conduct disaster response relief efforts and operational planning for the United Nations/African Union mandated operation in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Approximately 200 military personnel from seven nations will participate in the exercise.

The U.S. military, in partnership with the Malawi Defence Force, the Southern African Development Community (SADC), and other partner nations will conduct Southern Accord 2016, a command post and table top exercise, in Salima, Malawi, August 1 to 12.

What has the Army done?

U.S. Army is the planning proponent of Southern Accord, which brings together partner nations to practice and demonstrate proficiency in conducting peacekeeping and disaster relief operations.

Participating U.S. units include the 2nd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division and U.S. Army Africa. The multinational and multi-agency training audience will participate in scenarios of peacekeeping in support of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in Congo and disaster response in Southern Africa.

What continued efforts are planned for the future?

U.S. Army Africa leverages the Total Army and uses a regional focus, embedded in the Army’s global engagement strategy to strengthen African land forces and regional organizations. These foundational capabilities help synchronize efforts and provide options to prevent conflict, shape the security environment, and win conflicts. This exercise is just one example of U.S. Army Africa’s commitment to strengthening relationships with partner nations in Africa. Future Southern Accords will be scheduled to take place in Africa, and U.S. Army Africa will continue to develop and build upon the relationships and partnerships established here.

Why is this important to the Army?

The African continent is a complex environment that is three times the size of the U.S with more than one billion people and more than 2,000 spoken languages. The importance of building partnerships across Africa is more relevant than ever in light of the growth of regional and transnational violent extremist organizations. This exercise, involving land forces from several African and European partner nations, is a key element in a broader series of military-to-military activities to demonstrate the strong partnership between the U.S., the nations of Central Africa, and all of the participating militaries.

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