OSCE-supported Regional Course on Explosive Ordnance Disposal kicked off in Dushanbe

A three-week Regional Explosive Ordnance Disposal Course (EOD level 1) started on 10 July at the Regional Explosive Hazards Training Centre (REHTC) of Tajikistan’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) in Chimteppa, outskirts of Dushanbe. The representatives of the OSCE Programme Office in Dushanbe (POiD), the MoD, the U.S. EMBASSY, DUSHANBE, TAJIKISTAN and the United States Army Central (USARCENT) participated in the opening ceremony of the training course.

Sixteen specialists from Kazakhstan, Serbia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan will attend the course, hosted by Tajikistan’s MoD and facilitated by the OSCE POiD in partnership with USARCENT. USARCENT and the REHTC’s instructors will deliver the training course in accordance with the International Mine Action Standards.

The activity aims to develop the competencies and enhance the qualifications of military personnel from Central Asia in locating, exposing and destroying in situ, in a controlled environment such as a technical survey and/or clearance site, single items of mines, and specific explosive remnants of war.

In his opening speech, Deputy Head of the Engineering Department of the MoD, Colonel Hasanzoda Anvar emphasized the importance of the training in enhancing security and stability in Central Asia and thanked the project partners and stakeholders for their support and co-operation.

Lieutenant Colonel of the US Army Vitaly Gelfgat, Chief of Office of Military Cooperation of the US Embassy in Dushanbe expressed pride in Tajikistan's exceptional leadership in carrying out EOD operations training courses and their remarkable contributions to humanitarian de-mining activities. Recognizing the significance of these initiatives in promoting safety, enhancing security and safeguarding human lives, Mr Gelfgat emphasized the importance of sustaining the collaboration between Tajikistan and other Central Asian countries involved in such vital activities.

Programme Officer of the OSCE Programme Officer in Dushanbe Sonja Stanisavljevic noted that developing EOD capabilities will enable Tajikistan and its neighbouring countries in addressing explosive hazards independently and effectively.

The long-standing partnership between the POiD and MoD enables the implementation of programme activities on the ground level. By obtaining, strengthening and maintaining such regional networks and capabilities, the POiD supports Tajikistan and its neighbouring countries in the Central Asian region to effectively, efficiently and self-reliantly address the issues related to explosive hazards over the time.

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