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JMC - anti-riot demonstration

By Cpl. David Thomas
First published in
SFOR Informer#103, December 20, 2000

Mrkonjic Grad - "We are waiting for more than 50 official guests for this day," said Australian Capt. Jamie Mac Donald’s, who co-ordinated the 3rd (Battle Group) Joint Military Commission (JMC). "Local personalities, representatives from the Army of Republica Sprska (VRS), the local police, IPTF will take part in this meeting which relates to the riots and how to deal with them."
This Joint Military Commission aimed at "education by explaining to the VRS how to train for and to deal with riots," said British Lt. Col. Simon Deakin, Commanding Officer for the 2nd Battalion The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment. "Public order is not only a military subject. We are the last issue if the local force and the Multinational Specialised Unit (MSU) failed in their mission," he continued.
A conference, in English and Serbo-Croat, and a demonstration on the manner to deal with a demonstration which degenerates were both in the programme. Maj. John Wright spoke during the first part of the meeting. The British officer explained how troops apply the Rules of Engagement. Then, WO1 Teddy McAuley and CSgt. Dion Goldsmith talked about military forces.
The two senior NCOs pointed out that the deployment is initially carried out in order to negotiate with the demonstrators.
Then, soldiers devoted themselves to an anti-riot exercise. They negotiated, dispersed crowd with their Baton Guns,and neutralised dangerous people. The realism of the action allowed the participants to deal with various aspects of a hostile crowd.
"It's an excellent opportunity for SFOR, not only to make friends, but to assist the local population and professionalisation of VRS," underlined Gen. Robert Aitken, COMBRITFOR.
"It's very positive," said Lt. Col. Rade Vukovic from VRS 1st Corpus. "We can see how SFOR solves these riot problems."
"This is an opportunity to inform local population about SFOR capabilities and to establish relations with new colleagues, it has increased our joint work," insisted James Roberts, IPTF Deputy Section commander in Prijedor.

Related link:
Nations of SFOR: UK
SFOR at Work
EAF professionalisation