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Over 200 soldiers of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) have completed training as ambassadors in preventing sexual gender based violence (SGBV) in Liberia.
The United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) on today, Wednesday, April 27, 2016 donated several Explosive Ordinance Devices and four vehicles to the Explosive Ordinance Device Unit of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL). This donation marks the turning over of the responsibility of handling and dissolving of Unexploded Ordinance Device, (EOD) to the AFL.
In his opening remarks, the Deputy Minister for Operations, Hon. Saint Jerome Larbelee welcomed the UNMIL delegation headed by the Deputy Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General on the Rule of Law, Mr. Waldemar Vrey.
Speaking at the brief ceremony held at Ministry of National Defense Conference room, the Deputy Force Officer in-Charge/Force Commander of UNMIL, Brigadier General Dirk Faust thanked the Bangladeshi Contingent of UNMIL for providing the necessary training to personnel of the Explosive Ordinance Device Unit of the AFL who are well prepared to take over from UNMIL, the task of dealing with unexploded EOD’s within Liberia. He further asserted that he wished the AFL all the best in their new endeavor. He said that with the training and donation of the necessary EOD equipment, he was assured that the AFL can adequately perform the assigned task.
For his part, the Deputy SRSG for the Rule of Law, Mr. Waldemar Vrey said the occasion marked one of the critical points in the transition process. He pointed out that over the years UNMIL has identified and disposed of unexploded ordinance devices and as such dealing with EOD’s in post war Liberia is very critical to its security. He expressed satisfaction over the level of training that the AFL has received from their Bangladeshi counterpart. He encouraged the Ministry of National Defense and the Armed Forces to supplement the training provided by UNMIL continuously, as training is the order of the day in the military. He further appreciated the coordination existing between the Liberian National Police and the AFL.
Speaking on behalf of the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of Liberia, the Deputy Chief of Staff, Col. Eric Dennis said he was very grateful to UNMIL for the high quality of training and the timely donation of the Explosive Ordinance Device Equipment-including safety helmet, Firing Cable, vehicles amongst others which will greatly enhanced the capability of the AFL in response to any unexploded ordinance device found within the country. He further praised the Michigan State Government for providing additional training opportunity to the EOD Specialists of the Armed Forces of Liberia in boosting their skills in handling such delicate task.
In closing, Hon. Larbelee thanked UNMIL for the donation and said that it will be use for its intended purpose
Williette P. Monger (Mrs.)
Ministry of National Defense