43 Brigade SA trains for jungle and urban warfare ahead of MONUSCO FIB deployment

Troops from the 43 SA Brigade is currently undergoing jungle and urban warfare training ahead of its planned deployment to the Democratic Republic of Congo under Operation Mistral later this year.

43 SA Brigade began the extensive training at Entabeni near Thohoyandou in Limpopo on 22 February and will continue up till 22 March.

This is in fulfilment of the given directives on mission readiness training or employment, says Captain Ntsoaki Emily Ramolula, Acting Staff Officer 2 for the brigade. The jungle and urban warfare training will ensure that the quick reaction force (QRF) is properly prepared for continental deployment as part of MONUSCO’s Force Intervention Brigade (FIB) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The South African National Defence Force is tasked to provide fighting forces for the United Nations Force Intervention Brigade (FIB) and Quick Reaction Force (QRF), as part of the UN’s stabilisation mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo and MONUSCO.

Meanwhile, to keep the QRF combat-ready before it is handed over to the Chief of South African National Defence Force (Chief of Joint Operation) for Mission Readiness Training and or Employment, the Jungle Warfare Training is a necessary to achieving the mandate in the MONUSCO Mission Area.

Over the years, the Headquarters of 43 Brigade has been essential in achieving the South African Army’s mandate, and satisfying its mission statement “to Combat Ready, Command, Control and Support Rapid Deployment Forces when Commissioned”.

To achieve the training objectives, the Exercise Director, Colonel S.T. Hloka worked in tandem with the SA Army Infantry Formation, other Services and Divisions, the motorised infantry Company–Quick Reaction Force training will apply essential capabilities ranging from Vehicle and Foot Patrols (urban and rural), Jungle Warfare Orientation, Platoon Offensive Battle Drills, Fighting in a built-up area, Jungle Warfare Standard Operating Procedures,bRiver Crossing, Navigation using GPS, Shooting, Field Craft, Advanced UAV Training, Mass Evacuation/Casualty, and Base Protection.

Several branches of the SANDF partnered for the integrated jungle warfare training with the South African Air Force providing the Quick Reaction Force with Oryx and Augusta A109 Helicopters for Air Support while the South African Military Health Services (SAMHS) provided Medical Support to make the training a success. Elements of the SAMHS gained first-hand knowledge in dealing with injuries in real-life combat scenerio situations.

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