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Readiness Exercise Focuses on Upcoming Elections

Tikrit, Iraq
-- With an eye to the upcoming Iraqi national elections, Joint Coordination Centers in the Salah Ad Din Province, along with the Provincial Joint Coordination Center and other Iraqi entities, participated in a readiness exercise Jan 17 to 19.

The 2nd Brigade Combat Team's civil affair's section and Salah Ad Din Provincial Joint Coordination Center hosted the readiness exercise at the PJCC in Tikrit.

The local JCCs in the cities of Ash Sharqat, Bayji, Tikrit, Ad Dawr, Samarra, Balad, Ad Dujayl, Ad Duliyah and Tuz participated in the three-day event. In addition, the Iraqi Police Service, Iraqi Army, Iraqi Army bomb disposal units, Force Protection Services, International Election Commission for Iraq, Iraqi Ministry of Health and various emergency services also took part.

The goal of the exercise was "to prepare the Provincial JCC and the local JCCs in the major cities of Salah Ad Din Province for the upcoming Iraqi National Elections," said Master Sgt. Terry L. McKinney, 2nd BCT's PJCC liaison officer.

The Houston, Texas, resident said the readiness exercise was important because it helped to prepare the provincial and city governments for any emergency situation that might arise during the upcoming elections.

"Additionally, it allowed us to stress all our forms of communications to ensure that there are multiple ways that we can communicate from the province to the Iraqi National Headquarters and also to the local cities in the province," he said.

Three goals were achieved by holding the readiness exercise, he said. Communications between the provincial and local JCCs were vastly improved, response time for emergency services increased and Iraqi Security Forces are ready to respond to anti-Iraqi forces threats and secure election sites throughout the province.

Although this was the fourth time such a readiness exercise was held, the PJCC liaison officer said it was significant because the event focused on "synchronizing all the efforts from governmental and security elements in the province to communicate and work together."


Release #050124o

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