LCpl Thomas Jamieson, a rifleman with Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response-Africa, observes a live-fire training exercise with the Compagnie Fusilier de Marin Commando in Thies, Senegal, July 22 2016. Marines and the COFUMACO conducted a three-week training exercise that included advanced combat firing techniques, a machine gun range and a live-fire platoon attack range. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by 1st Lt. Eric Abrams /released)
THIES, Senegal — Senegal’s Compagnie Fusilier de Marin Commando surpassed new training milestones during a three-week exercise with Marines from Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force Crisis Response–Africa in Thies, Senegal, June 6-24, 2016.

Different from previous iterations, participants in this training exercise included only those in leadership billets from the COFUMACO. Marines taught advanced infantry tactics during this training cycle including combat firing techniques, a machine gun range and a live-fire platoon attack range.

“It is extremely important for the COFUMACO to receive this training from the Marines,” said Enseigne de Vaisseau 1st class Lucien Malack, the unit commander for the COFUMACO. “By training the leaders in these tactics, we are able to pass along additional knowledge and create new training opportunities.”

With the ever-changing security environment in Africa, training evolutions such as these foster vital strategic partnerships and serves to reinforce the close ties between the nations.

“This engagement strengthens the relationship between the U.S. and Senegal,” said 1st Lt. Justin Klein, a team leader with SPMAGTF-CR-AF. “It provides training and resources not normally available to many Senegalese units. Not only does the COFUMACO benefit from the training, but so do our Marines who gain valuable experience instructing and learning to interact with foreign military personnel.”
By developing a more seamless working environment through this training, these partner nations are better prepared to address future security concerns together.

“The cooperation between our two countries has been an excellent thing,” said Malack. “You never know what can happen in the future, with training like this we will be more confident working with Marines in the future and they know they can rely on the COFUMACO and other military units from Senegal because they have worked with them before.”