By Ayse Betul Gedikoglu
The U.S.-led Flintlock 2019 military exercise began on Monday in Burkina Faso.
More than 30 countries are taking part in the exercise, to be held in various cities of the West African state.
Gen. Moise Minoungou, the nation's chief of staff, said in a statement that Flintlock was the most important annual military exercise carried out by the U.S. Special Forces Command in Africa.
Among the African countries taking part in the exercise are Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Morocco, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Chad, and Tunisia.
Participating Western countries include Austria, Belgium, Denmark, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Norway, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, the U.K., and the U.S.
The aim of the exercise is to boost the ability of countries in the region to fight terrorist groups, protect their borders, and ensure public security, said the statement.
The military drills will be held in the cities of Ouagadougou, Po, Bobo-Dioulasso as well as in Mauritania from Feb. 18 to March 1.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.