NIAMEY, Niger —
U.S. service members assigned to U.S. Africa Command's North and West Africa Response Force (NARF) conducted a cross-continent strategic engagement in Niger, August 7-9. The NARF is under the command and control of U.S. Army Southern European Task Force, Africa (SETAF-AF).
"The engagement across West Africa into Niger enabled the NARF to exercise its readiness by testing its operational reach throughout the region," said Maj. Gen. Andrew Rohling, the SETAF-AF commander.
The NARF's mission is crisis and contingency response in North and West Africa, including to protect U.S. interests in the U.S. Africa Command area of responsibility.
Leaders from the NARF conducted a coordination visit with officials at the U.S. Embassy in Niamey, where they briefed officials on their capabilities to execute crisis response missions in Africa.
Also while in Niger, U.S. troops met informally with French military counterparts at Air Base 101 in Niamey.
"The French are important, longstanding allies who share our commitment to address complex security concerns in Africa," said Lt. Col. Kevin Ward, a battalion commander with the 173rd Airborne Brigade who attended the French-hosted engagement.
SETAF-AF took over the North and West Africa crisis response force mission from the Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force-Crisis Response-Africa in Oct. 2020.
"The NARF is on call and ready to provide the U.S. Africa Command commander the capability to quickly respond to crisis and protect U.S. personnel and interests in the region," said Rohling.