A team of soldiers from the United States Air Force is in the country conducting a training course alongside the Zambia Air force (ZAF) to enhance and build capacity within the military wing.

Speaking to the media at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport when the soldiers demonstrated some skills learnt, United states Mission Commander Major Jared Cordell said the three weeks training course would allow ZAF officers to travel longer distances and transport more cargo safely.

Major Cordell said the Zambia Air force would be getting an additional aircraft of C-27 with intent to enhance ZAF’s ability to support peace keeping operations and disaster responses within Zambia and the region.

“As you can see we have got two groups of trainings going on, the first is doing logistic training and the other group is doing some security training. We were asked by the government of Zambia to come and assist in building the capability within the ZAF to culminate future operational possibilities. The ZAF is going to be getting additional aircrafts of C-27. It will allow them to travel further with more cargo. And so the goal of this training is to help the ZAF prepare cargo for shipment and be able to move the people on their equipment for longer distances than they have before,” Major Cordell explained.

“Now simultaneously when you have additional aircraft here at the base, the security requirements also increase. In order to have the aircraft that can be able to transport goods and people regionally, they need to have the security capable of protecting them wherever they go, and thats the training that you see here.”

He said the team would also train its Zambian counterpart how to better secure an air field as well as flight lines.

“A group of security forces are training how to better secure an air field, flight line and to protect these expensive machines that the ZAF has and they are going to require. Thats the training we have been focusing on for the last two weeks. The participants on the ZAF side have been extremely accommodating, very helpful and extremely knowledgeable. They have been operating Mi-17 helicopter for some time now and and thats also a cargo helicopter. The difference is the new airforce is much larger. So they are taking principles which they know already on the Mi-17 and applying them in a large scale to the C-27,” said Major Cordell.