OSCE-supports regional EOD course for specialists from Central Asia and Afghanistan

DUSHANBE, 24 October 2014 – A two-week regional Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) course for Russian and Tajik-Dari speaking groups facilitated by the OSCE Office in Tajikistan concluded in Dushanbe today.

The Level 2 course was conducted from 13 to17 October and from 20 to 24 October 2014, and was a follow-up to the EOD Level 1 course, which attracted the interests of other countries in the region. In total 40 students from Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Afghanistan and newly-joined participants from Armenia studied basic concepts of EOD,and were also introduced to the main topics of EOD Level 2 such as safety precautions, the general rules of explosive ordnance identification and the main techniques on the final disposal of ordnance.

Developed by specialists and instructors of the U.S. Army Central, the training course was organized to cover basic regulations and management of the EOD operations and to provide necessary practical knowledge on annihilating and demolishing different types of unexploded ordnance. It provided participants with the necessary knowledge and methods of teaching EOD-related materials based on international standards.

“Not only does the technical co-operation result in closer interaction and dialogue on common concerns related to explosive hazards, but it also complements confidence- and security-building processes in Central Asia and Afghanistan,” said Hans Peter Larsen, Deputy Head of the OSCE Office in Tajikistan.

Sharipov Shohrukh, Tajik Defence Ministry representative and Muhabbat Ibrohimzoda, Director of the Tajik National Mine Action Centre, stressed the importance of educational courses and commended the implementation of the EOD trainings project and readiness to continue co-operation in the field of EOD.

Lieutenant Colonel Benjamin Lipari, U. S. Army Central Command EOD Chief, stated that the training courses will contribute to raising the professional level of EOD services in Central Asia and Afghanistan.

All participants went through a test and received certificates after completing the course. The training materials, including EOD training modules, were translated into the Russian and Tajik-Dari languages and distributed to participants.

This is the fourth course this year, and was hosted by Tajikistan’s Defense Ministry, facilitated by the OSCE Office in Tajikistan in partnership with the U.S. Army Central Command, and supported by the Office for Military Co-operation of the U.S. Embassy in Dushanbe.

The EOD specialists from Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan’s Defence Ministries as well as Afghanistan’s Defence Ministry, Interior Affairs Ministry and Mine Action Coordination Centre of Afghanistan participated in the training course.

Since 2009, the OSCE has been supporting the development of co-operative mechanisms on a technical level among states in Central Asia and Afghanistan to address the concerns and challenges stemming from explosive hazards.

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