New Zealand military training U.S. troops for Middle East peacekeeping

Source: XinhuaEditor: Ouyang
2016-08-10 17:28

WELLINGTON, Aug. 10 (Xinhua) -- The New Zealand military has been training the United States troops for peacekeeping duties in the Sinai Peninsula, the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) revealed on Wednesday.

Four NZDF instructors had just completed a 10-day course for more than 200 U.S. troops at Fort Bliss in Texas, said a statement from the NZDF.

The course gave the U.S. soldiers an overview of the Multinational Force and Observers (MFO), an independent international organization with peacekeeping responsibilities in Sinai.

U.S. troops were trained in driving fully armored vehicles, including an evasive driving course, and tested on safely navigating Egyptian roads.

They were also taught how to investigate and report on potential violations of the 1979 Treaty of Peace between Egypt and Israel, how to conduct patrols, and how to deliver weapons training on the MFO's ranges.

"The U.S. side is pleased that the majority of their MFO-specific training has been completed and they will now be able to focus on individual handovers and their specific mission from the moment they arrive in the Sinai," Captain Robert Paterson, who led the NZDF training team, said in the statement.

The NZDF training team trained and licensed about 120 U.S. soldiers to drive fully armored vehicles.

The NZDF had been contributing a transport section, a training and advisory team, and key staff to the MFO since it was established in 1982.

Currently, 26 NZDF members formed part of an MFO force comprised of around 1,700 personnel from 11 other countries.

Except for the U.S., all other countries undertook MFO-specific training on arrival in the Sinai.

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