Georgia opens military exercises Agile Spirit 2011
Georgia, Tbilisi, July 19 / Trend N.Kirtzkhalia /
A two-week Georgian-American exercise Agile Spirit has today been launched in Georgia.
A combined military exercise Agile Spirit 2011 conducted in the Vaziani Training Area involves the U.S. Marines and soldiers from the 4th Infantry Brigade of the Georgian Armed Forces, the Georgian Defense Ministry reported.
The focus of the exercise is to increase interoperability between the forces and exchange and enhance each other's capacity in counterinsurgency and peacekeeping operations.
The exercise involve approximately 350 Marines from the Marine Corps' Black Sea Rotational Force 11 based in Constanta, Romania, Anti-Terrorism Battalion based out of Bessemer, Ala. and 450 military servicemen of the Georgian 4th Infantry Brigade.
Agile Spirit is the first of what is scheduled to become an annual exercise and supplements other military engagements such as the Georgia Deployment Program, which is a U.S. Marine Corps program that prepares Georgian Armed Forces to deploy to Afghanistan in support of the International Security Assistance Force.
"Our Marines are eager to train with the Georgian Armed Forces to continue to build on an already strong partnership between our two countries," said LtCol. Nelson S. Cardella, commanding officer, Black Sea Rotational Force 11. "We are grateful to the Georgian Armed Forces and to the people of Georgia for hosting this important training and contributing so much to regional and international security."
Black Sea Rotational Force 11 is a rotational deployment of Marines to the Black Sea, Balkan and Caucasus regions to work with partner and allied nations to help build their military capacity, promote stability throughout the region, and build enduring partnerships with 13 nations throughout Eastern Europe.