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U.S. OOL Ends In Liberia
Date Uploaded: Aug 11, 2016

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U.S. OOL Ends In Liberia

MONROVIA, August 11 (LINA) - The United States Embassy has revealed that Operation Onward Liberty (OOL) Thursday concluded its six-year mentoring and advising mission to assist the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL).

The objective was to build a professional military that is responsible for the country’s security.

Operation Onward Liberty officially started in 2010 by the U.S. Army Michigan National Guard.

The personnel who formed that first mission built a strong partnership as they worked with their Liberian counterparts in the newly-formed AFL.

According to an U.S. embassy release, OOL personnel also mentored officers of the AFL to be respectful of rule of law, and that it is answerable to civilian authority.

“The AFL has made great strides since its reconstitution in 2005 and is now a professional and capable force; in light of the progress achieved, OOL was able to successfully conclude its mission,” the release said. 

Subsequent teams built on this foundation by training the AFL in a wide variety of skills, from basic infantry tactics to staff operations. The initial teams were comprised of U.S. Marines, Army, and Air Force personnel, while since 2014 the Michigan National Guard has served as the OOL partner.

During the last deployment, known as OOL 16, the advisors were specifically charged with mentoring the Joint Staff of the AFL headquarters. 

Their key objectives included increasing the effectiveness of the National Military Response Center, enhancing the Joint Staff’s capacity to man, equip, and train forces and establishing a functional Non-commissioned Officer Support channel.

Other objectives, the release said, were assisting with the AFL Engineer Battalion and Explosive Ordnance Disposal activation plans and improving AFL medical readiness and health care system development. 

The OOL 16 team will return to Michigan in August 2016. 

“After the conclusion of OOL, security cooperation support will continue through the U.S. Embassy’s Office of Security Cooperation, focusing on training and equipping in five main areas: Defense Institution Strengthening, Professional Development, Maritime Security, Engineer Support and Medical Readiness,” the release said.

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