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CIOR CIMEX 2016 - A Success in Madrid

For the fifth year, the CIOR Civil-Military Cooperation (CIMIC) Committee has organised a CIMEX (CIMIC exercise) prior to the CIOR Summer Congress. This year it was held at the Military Engineering Academy in Hoyo near Madrid.

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 2016 took place from July 30th through August 2nd. 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 and given a task from which they had to produce a solution.

26 participants and speakers from 11 countries took part in CIMEX 2016. The countries participating were: Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, UK, and the US.


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Photo by Capt Henry Plimack, USCGR (Ret)

The theme for CIMEX 16 was Refugee Crisis and had a specific objective to: “achieve a common understanding of the main factors to be considered in the Civilian/Military response to a Refugee Crisis”. Supporting presentations were given by speakers from NATO, US Civil Affairs, US Army Africa, CIOR Legal Committee, Hungary, Spain, and the US Coast Guard.

Presentation subjects included: The World Today; Definitions of Refugee Crisis and Mass Migration; What is CIMIC; Perspectives & Developments in Resilience and Capacity Building; Actors in the Operational Space; Stabilisation Operations; Law of Armed Conflict; Migration Issues in Africa, Spain and south Hungarian border; Maritime Migration.

The desktop exercise was based on a fictional refugee crisis scenario, arising from a complex mix of conflict, political and natural disaster factors. Syndicates had to consider two questions: Firstly: how to conduct a CIMIC assessment of the situation and describe the processes and tools to be used. Secondly: identify how and who to engage with in the civil environment, in order to support the Commander’s mission.
The desktop exercise was facilitated by an experienced former UK Civil Affairs officer who is now an international Security and Defence Consultant with a mix of military, academic and diplomatic experience.
Syndicate solutions were presented to Maj Gen Greg SMITH (UK) and Brig Gen Mike SILVA (US).

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Photos by Capt Henry Plimack, USCGR (Ret)


A post exercise evaluation of participant’s feedback showed that CIMEX achieved its generic objectives and also its specific objectives in relation to Refugee Crisis. Participants reported that their level of knowledge of the subject had improved as a result of their participation in this CIMEX.

The CIMIC Committee continues to see CIMEX as a cost effective way of getting international CIMIC organisations and Reservists together to explore areas of developing common interest. The Committee will continue to strive towards validation and certification of CIMEX by an internationally recognised body.

The Committee has started planning for CIMEX 2017. The theme identified is Refugee Crisis, Part II, with a focus on: The Changing Role of CIMIC, Resilience, and Internal Defence. Further work on this will carried out at CIOR’s Winter Meeting in NATO HQ Brussels, February 2017. At that time the CIOR Council is expected to confirm the location for Summer Congress and CIMEX 2017.

Lt Col Peter CARROLL (UK), the outgoing chairman for the past three and a half years, handed over the committee to Col Vanessa DORNHOEFER (US). Both have been working closely together over the past months in order to facilitate a smooth transition. The CIMIC Committee has a strong core team, and under the new leadership of Col DORNHOEFER and will take CIMEX to the next level in terms of supporting the objectives of CIOR. Details of CIMEX 2017 will be communicated in due course.

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CIMEX 16 participants


Author: Lt Col Peter Carroll
peter.carroll@smurfitkappa.co.uk
+44 (0) 7711 002767


 


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