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AE-09 Planning Ends First Phase
Delegates from 25 African States participated in the in initial planning conference for U.S. Africa Command exercise AFRICA ENDEAVOR 2009 (AE-09), which completed its first round of initial planning January 16, 2009. <br /> <br />Throughout the
DAKAR, Senegal - Captain Ousmane Sall, Senegal Ministry of Defense Deputy Chief of Defense (right), and  Marcia Bernicat, U.S. Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau (left), observe the closing Ceremony for the Africa Endeavor Initial Planning Conference on January 16, 2009 in Dakar, Senegal. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg)
3 photos: U.S. AFRICOM Photo
Photo 1 of 3: DAKAR, Senegal - Captain Ousmane Sall, Senegal Ministry of Defense Deputy Chief of Defense (right), and Marcia Bernicat, U.S. Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau (left), observe the closing Ceremony for the Africa Endeavor Initial Planning Conference on January 16, 2009 in Dakar, Senegal. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg) Download full-resolution version
DAKAR, Senegal - Delegation Chief Colonel Northo Kidano from Ethiopia observes the closing ceremony of the Africa Endeavor Initial Planning Conference, January 16, 2009 in Dakar, Senegal. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg)
3 photos: U.S. AFRICOM Photo
Photo 2 of 3: DAKAR, Senegal - Delegation Chief Colonel Northo Kidano from Ethiopia observes the closing ceremony of the Africa Endeavor Initial Planning Conference, January 16, 2009 in Dakar, Senegal. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg) Download full-resolution version
DAKAR, Senegal - Delegation Chiefs stand at attention as distinguished guests, Captain Ousmane Sall, Senegal Ministry of Defense Deputy Chief of Defense, and Marcia Bernicat, U.S. Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, enter the room fro the closing ceremony of Africa Endeavor's Initial Planning Conference on January 16, 2009. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg)
3 photos: U.S. AFRICOM Photo
Photo 3 of 3: DAKAR, Senegal - Delegation Chiefs stand at attention as distinguished guests, Captain Ousmane Sall, Senegal Ministry of Defense Deputy Chief of Defense, and Marcia Bernicat, U.S. Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, enter the room fro the closing ceremony of Africa Endeavor's Initial Planning Conference on January 16, 2009. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg) Download full-resolution version
DAKAR, Senegal - Captain Ousmane Sall, Senegal Ministry of Defense Deputy Chief of Defense (right), and  Marcia Bernicat, U.S. Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau (left), observe the closing Ceremony for the Africa Endeavor Initial Planning Conference on January 16, 2009 in Dakar, Senegal. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg)
DAKAR, Senegal - Delegation Chief Colonel Northo Kidano from Ethiopia observes the closing ceremony of the Africa Endeavor Initial Planning Conference, January 16, 2009 in Dakar, Senegal. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg)
DAKAR, Senegal - Delegation Chiefs stand at attention as distinguished guests, Captain Ousmane Sall, Senegal Ministry of Defense Deputy Chief of Defense, and Marcia Bernicat, U.S. Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, enter the room fro the closing ceremony of Africa Endeavor's Initial Planning Conference on January 16, 2009. Africa Endeavor, the largest multi-national communication interoperability exercise on the African continent, will be hosted in Gabon in July, 2009. The exercise is designed to encourage information sharing among African nations that will support the development of overall African Union humanitarian assistance, disaster relief and peace-support missions. (U.S. Africa Command Photo by Justin G. Wagg)
Delegates from 25 African States participated in the in initial planning conference for U.S. Africa Command exercise AFRICA ENDEAVOR 2009 (AE-09), which completed its first round of initial planning January 16, 2009.

Throughout the week, more than 100 exercise participants held numerous focus group discussions on topics ranging from technical challenges and operational updates to cultural differences and ways to bridge those gaps in order to achieve a common goal--successful multi-national partnerships, increased interoperability and mutual understanding between the various militaries and governments. The purpose of the conference was to build a strong foundation for a successful Africa Endeavor exercise in July.

The conference concluded with a closing ceremony that was attended by partner nations' delegates and Defense Attaches and the Senegalese Africa Endeavor Planning Commission from participating nations. It included remarks from Captain Ousmnane Ibrahima Sall, the Senegal Deputy Chief of Defense and U.S. Ambassador to Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, Marcia Bernicat.

Bernicat expressed support and encouragement for the participant's work that week.
"We are excited to work with you throughout this year to build upon what you have started here in Senegal and create the atmosphere for success in your future conferences and the exercise in both Cameroon and Gabon. I think you all have an even keener understanding of what a vital role information and interoperability have in our everyday lives," she said.

"My hope is that capacity building opportunities such as Africa Endeavor provide the foundations of the relationships which will provide the stability and security that we all strive for in our nations," said Bernicat.

Captain Sall also commented on the future benefits of the exercise. "There is no doubt that Africa Endeavor will contribute greatly to the achievement of creating better interoperability between the AU and the African Standby Force," he said.

Sall specifically thanked Exercise Director for Africa Endeavor 2009 Lieutenant Colonel Robert Watson, and the U.S. Africa Command planning team.

Following the closing ceremony, delegates and participants were treated to a traditional cultural dinner provided by the Senegalese hosts.

The conference in Senegal was the first in series of conferences scheduled over the next 6 months dedicated to AE-09. The next conference will be held in Cameroon in March and the final conference will be in Gabon in May.

"It is my hope that the March planning conference and the final planning conference will serve as a way to invite even more nations to participate in Africa endeavor 2009," said Sall.
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