Flintlock 10 Offers Media Opportunities

STUTTGART, Germany -- Flintlock 10, the latest iteration of U.S. Africa Command's premier Special Operations Forces exercise, kicks off May 2, 2010, in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, and runs through May 23.

Accredited media representatives may request a schedule of planned activities contacting the Flintlock Public Affair Office at Flintlock-PAO@africom.mil.

Flintlock is a joint multinational exercise to improve information sharing at the operational and tactical levels across the Saharan region while fostering increased collaboration and coordination. It is focused on military interoperability and capacity-building among partner nations, including nations in Northern and Western Africa, Europe, and the United States. The exercise takes place in the context of the Trans-Sahara Counter Terrorism Partnership (TSCTP), supported by the U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) and the Special Operations Command (SOCAFRICA).

Flintlock 10 looks to build upon the successes and lessons learned during previous Flintlock exercises, which were conducted to establish and develop regional relationships and synchronization of effort across the Trans-Sahara nation militaries.

A Multi-national Coordination Center in Burkina Faso is planned to serve as a focal point for multi-national information sharing, as well as the planning of synchronized exercises in the region. The MCC staff will conduct academic training for all participants, culminating in a command post exercise (CPX). The CPX involves instruction, scenario development and a control group to enhance the participants' ability to work collaboratively toward solving a shared regional crisis involving illegal activities that disrupt stability and security.

The tactical portion of Flintlock 10 will consist of small-unit combined training and activities involving U.S. Special Operations Forces and partner nation militaries throughout the region. During Flintlock10, Medical and Veterinary Civic Action Programs will provide health information and basic medical care for rural populations.

Scheduled opportunities are planned for media outlets to view training engagements and exercise events, and to speak with select U.S. and partner-nation participants. These opportunities are scheduled to take place in Burkina Faso, Mali, Mauritania, and Senegal. Media members may request a list of dates and places from Flintlock Public Affairs. Events during Flintlock will be conducted jointly with U.S. and host partner-nation military units.

Media interested in covering the exercise or attending a scheduled media opportunity date, should send an e-mail request to Flintlock-PAO@Africom.mil. The Public Affairs Office also can provide fact sheets and answer basic exercise questions.