American troops in the Horn of Africa area have started a series of training exercises. In Djibouti, a company of 10th Mountain Division troopers were involved in MOUT missions. An unknown number of U.S. troops are currently in the Kenyan coastal towns of Mombasa and Lamu, training Kenyan naval forces. Other American training teams were dispatched to Ethiopia and Yemen, to prepare local soldiers there for anti-terror operations.
The Germans are thinking of reinforcing their contingent based in Djibouti from 400 to up to 700, in addition to the 150 air force personnel stationed in Kenya's Mombasa. - Adam Geibel
The Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa has officially moved its headquarters from the USS Mount Whitney to Camp Lemonier in Djibouti on June 16th. The move to a land-based military installation was necessary to improve intelligence gathering and sharing among coalition partners, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya and Yemen. The CJTF-HOA now has three times the communications capability and band-width, compared to when they were operating at sea.
Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa also recently welcomed the three-ship USS Iwo Jima Amphibious Ready Group (amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima, amphibious transport ship USS Nashville and dock landing ship USS Carter Hall), along with the guided missile frigate USS Gary in the Gulf of Aden. The amphibious group brings nearly 2,000 sailors total to the Horn of Africa region and more than 2,100 Marines and sailors from the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable) on hand.
The 26th MEU has been busy since the War on Terror started. In May, the Marine unit took part in exercises with the ministry of defense for Albania. Before that, 26th saw action in Operation Iraqi Freedom near the northern town of Mosul. The 26th previously participated in Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan from November 2001 to February 2002, and follows both the 22d and 24th Marine Expeditionary units, which trained and supported counterterrorism operations in the Horn of Africa region. - Adam Geibel