U. S. Army Gen. Stephen Townsend, commander, U. S. Africa Command, concluded a two-day visit to Angola to meet with Angolan President João Lourenço and other senior government officials May 18.
“I came to Angola for the purpose of strengthening military cooperation between our two nations. In Luanda, I found a willing partner,” said Townsend. “Our relationship with the Armed Forces of Angola is still maturing but our conversations have sharpened our focus on our mutual security concerns. U.S. AFRICOM looks forward to working with the Angolan military to develop sustainable solutions in areas like maritime security, peace-keeping operations, special operations training and the integration of simulations and more."
During his meeting with President Lourenço, Townsend, who was accompanied by U.S. Ambassador to Angola, Tulinabo Mushingi and U.S. Africa Command’s Senior Enlisted Leader, U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Maj. Richard Thresher, discussed how Angola and the U.S. could partner together on shared issues including maritime security, terrorism, military professionalism, and the integration of peacekeeping capabilities.
The U.S. representatives also met with senior leaders from the Angolan Ministry of Defense and Ministry of State where they discussed global and regional security cooperation with their counterparts.
“Meeting senior officials from partner nations is critical to developing our relationships,” said Thresher. “Understanding their priorities and development issues -- especially as it relates to the development of a professional senior non-commissioned officer corps, will help us understand where to best focus our partnerships efforts.
This was Townsend’s first visit to Angola.