Peacekeeping Operations – Americas (PKO) 2012 was an exercise focused on peacekeeping operations and improving and building partner nation peacekeeping capabilities in South and Central America and the Caribbean. The government of Chile hosted this multinational command post exercise from in April - May 2012. The exercise included regional armed forces, governmental agencies, and non-governmental organizations.
SANTIAGO, Chile (April 30, 2012) – Officials from 16 countries gather for a photo during the Peacekeeping Operations-Americas (PKO-A) Senior Leaders Seminar. (U.S. Army photo by Jose Saez)
Peacekeeping Operations-Americas 2012 is a U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM)-sponsored, regionally-oriented command post exercise. The exercise is focused on the exchange of inter-regional peacekeeping tactics, battalion and company level training and the exchange of information between multinational and joint forces.
More than 300 representatives from participating nations and organizations such as the United Nations, Conference of American Armies, Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation and Conference of Central American, Armed Forces (CFAC) are taking part.
Nations participating in Peacekeeping Operations-Americas 2012 are Argentina, Belize, Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, Ecuador, El Salvador, Paraguay, Peru, the United States and Uruguay.
Peacekeeping Operations-Americas 2012 is a series of multinational exercises designed to enhance regional dialogue among military forces from 16 countries, governmental, non-governmental organization and other agencies in order to address concerns, lessons learned and new initiatives involved in peacekeeping.
The exercise provides a training opportunity for all participating countries to improve and develop their peacekeeping skills in order to build upon their operational capacity. The exercise’s scenario is designed to challenge participants’ abilities to implement and sustain United Nations Security Council peacekeeping standards and ensure participants are better prepared to respond to future peacekeeping operational challenges.
The final command post exercise is the last phase of the four-phased Peacekeeping Operations-Americas 2012.
The first phase of the exercise was a battalion level training event conducted March 19-23 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The second phase was a junior leaders' training event April 2-6 at the Military Operation Urban Training Facility in Fort Aguayo, Chile. The third phase was a senior leader staff seminar in Santiago, Chile April 30 – May 2.
Importance of exercise
Peacekeeping Operations-Americas 2012 provides valuable experiences for members of the U.S. military to learn from non-governmental organizations and civilian and military experts from participating nations. This experience is a contributing factor to the U.S. military’s ability to rapidly respond in support of emergency relief efforts in the region.
Peacekeeping operations are complex and require extensive cooperation among the parties involved. The exercise’s training develops stronger relations and interaction.
The relationships built and sustained with multinational partners in Central and South America and the Caribbean region through exercises, professional and military exchanges help tremendously in humanitarian efforts and preserving peace and stability in the region.