The United States (US) government has announced that the United States Africa Command (AFRICOM) will open an Office of Security Cooperation at the U.S. Embassy in Zambia, aimed at strengthening the foundation of the U.S.- Zambia shared security interests.
The new Office of Security Cooperation will enhance military to military relations and expand areas of cooperation in force management, modernization, and professional military education for the Zambian security forces.
This announcement was made by the AFRICOM Deputy Director for Strategy, Engagement, and Programs Peter Bailey, when he met with President Hakainde Hichilema during his visit to Zambia.
Brig. Gen Bailey commended President Hichilema and his new dawn administration for its steadfast commitment to regional peace and stability and reiterated that the U.S. government looks forward to building on its strong bilateral ties with Zambia to enhance security cooperation
He also praised the Zambian Defence Force for its professionalism and contributions to United Nations peacekeeping missions.
He is later expected to meet with the Minister of Defense, Ambrose Lufuma, and represent AFRICOM at the official opening ceremony for the start of pre-deployment training for the eighth Zambia Battalion (ZAMBATT VIII).
The U.S. government has since the year 2014 invested over 136 million kwacha ($8 million) in assistance for seven iterations of pre-deployment training for Zambian Battalions deployed to the United Nations Multidimensional Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA).
This is contained in a press statement by the US embassy made available to the media in Lusaka today.