Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers
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CIOR CIMEX 15, Sofia, Bulgaria


For the fourth year, the CIOR CIMIC Committee has organised a CIMEX (CIMIC exercise) prior to the CIOR main Summer Congress. This year in Sofia, Bulgaria, CIMEX took place in the Rakovski National Defence Academy in Sofia.


The overriding objectives of CIMEX are: “to encourage liaison, networking and information sharing, and promote best practice within the international CIOR CIMIC community. in order to better understand our international partners, and work more effectively together”.

CIMEX took place over the period 3 to 5 Aug. Similar to previous years, it consisted of two parts. The first was a series of presentations; the second was a desktop exercise during which participants were put into multi-national syndicates, then given a task from which they had to produce a solution. Teams back-briefed their solutions to Maj Gen Greg SMITH, former UK Assistant Chief of Defence Staff.
 
40 participants and speakers from 9 countries took part in CIMEX. The countries participating were: Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, UK, US.

The theme for CIMEX 15 was Upstream Prevention (Phase 0), and had a specific objective to: “achieve a common understanding of what Upstream Prevention is, why we should invest in it, and how do we do it”. Supporting presentations were received from: the Centre of Excellence for Crisis Management & Disaster Response, a consultant on Cultural Awareness, UNHCR, IOM, US 353 Civil Affairs Command, a consultant on the NATO Operational Planning Process, UNICEF, and the Bulgarian Red Cross.
 

The desktop exercise was based on a crisis scenario from a NATO CIMIC exercise. Syndicates had to consider three questions: First: identify the root cause of the situation, giving consideration to a number of factors including political, economy, culture & religion, crime, employment, education, gender & children etc. Second: what could have been done to avoid the current situation. Third: identify the stakeholders who could have been involved, and what their contribution could have been.

The desktop exercise was facilitated by the CIMIC Centre of Excellence (CCOE) and an independent professional with experience in running CIMIC exercises for military headquarters.

CIMEX was successful in that it exposed participants to the root cause analysis of crisis situations, in order to better understand the value of Upstream Prevention, and the fact that addressing an issue before it has had the chance to develop, saves lives and is more cost effective for governments.

The CIMIC Committee continues to see CIMEX as a cost effective way of getting international Reserve CIMIC organisations together to explore areas of developing common interest. The Committee has been working on developing the idea of having CIMEX certified as a formal training event, in order that participants can have their attendance certified and recorded in their personal career files. Lt Col Peter CARROLL the current chairman of the Committee, and CCOE have been discussing some ideas for moving this forward.

The Committee will start to plan CIMEX 16 at the CIOR Midwinter Meeting in NATO HQ Brussels in February 2016, by which time the CIOR Council is expected to confirm the location for Summer Congress.

 


© 2012 Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers