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Sep 3, 2015

B.D.F Soldiers Complete Skills Training with U.S.M.C.

More than twenty B.D.F. officers are now trained on marksmanship and combat readiness. The month-long training was carried out by the United States Marine Corps and a ceremony was held earlier today to mark the completion of the rigid program, which prepared the soldiers to improve their operations especially along the border points. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

A cohort of twenty-one Belize Defense Force soldiers has successfully completed an intense skills training exercise conducted by the United States Marine Corps.  Over the past several weeks, the officers have been receiving lessons in various areas of expertise, including combat readiness.  Captain Stephen Dally is a facilitator with the USMC.

 

Stephen Dally

Capt. Stephen Dally, O.C., Security Co-operations Team

“Over the last four weeks, the B.D.F. soldiers have undergone an intense physical training regimen, as well as marksmanship both with medium and light machine guns, as well as the M4 service rifle.  They’ve also done combat patrolling work, patrolling formations, patrolling fundamentals, things of that nature.  They’ve also done combat lifesaving skills in which we focused on field ready first aid for those who get  wounded during operations.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“Going into the field, how has this program assisted in the development or the betterment of your soldiers should they need to rely on these particular capabilities?”

 

Louis Sutherland

Lt. Col. Louis Sutherland, Chief of Staff, B.D.F.

“This course certainly helps our soldiers.  For one, training alongside the U.S. Marines, they are very experienced.  They have combat experience that the B.D.F. doesn’t have.  Basically it was information sharing and best practice, best method used or best method that has been proven over time.  So this will enhance our soldiers’ capability whilst on operation, be it alongside the border or within Belize itself. This is a continuation of a longstanding relationship that we have.  Today is the second graduation of the second iteration under Captain Stephen Dally and the fifth such under this program.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“In terms of some of the skills that are applicable, that these soldiers would be able to either apply or partake in in the field, how better are they or how ready are they?”

 

Capt. Stephen Dally

“I’ve seen a significant improvement over the last four weeks, especially when it comes to the works on patrolling.  I know that here in Belize the patrolling is different from what we’re used to as U.S. Marines and what we’ve experienced recently but what we are able to do is take input from our B.D.F. instructors, as well as some of my marine teams and come up with more efficient ways to engage, to go over and have a successful operation in terms of planning, as well as the execution of such missions.”

 

Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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