UK takes over Presidency at Summer Congress in Quebec City

August 10, 2018 – Quebec, CIOR Public Affairs.

By: U.S. Air Force Reserve Senior Airman Justin Fuchs.

Canada hosted the Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR) and Interallied Confederation of Medical Reserve  Officers (CIOMR) annual Summer Congress from August 3 to 10, in Quebec City, Canada.

Founded in 1948 and officially recognised by  NATO in 1976, CIOR provides advice on the best use of reservists and improves the knowledge of NATO authorities about national reserve forces. CIOR mainly meets twice a year, at the Summer Congress rotating between member countries and at the Mid Winter Meeting in Brussels.

– An honour to host the CIOR Summer Congress

“It is an honor to once again host the CIOR/CIOMR Summer Congress,” said Harjit S. Sajjan, Canadian Minister of National Defence. “Through our defence policy, strong, secure, engaged, our Government has committed to further integrating reservists into the total force and providing it with sufficient numbers, training, preparation, and equipment to be ready to contribute to operations at home and abroad. I am proud that our CAF reservists are joining our international partners to discuss common Reserve Force issues, such as contribution to international operations, training and employer support.”

The activities of the 2018 CIOR Summer Congress have been held in several locations around Quebec City, including the Québec Citadel, CAF Base Valcartier and the Pointe-à-Carcy Naval Reserve. The 2nd Canadian Division has provided the personnel and facilities required, welcoming all participants and guests to the various activities and ensuring this international event runs smoothly.

– Good opportunity to demonstrate Canada’s professionalism

“I am pleased to be a part of such a special event that brings nations together, develops important cross-cultural dialogues and provides a forum for collaborative approaches to common problems,” said Major-General P.J. Bury, Chief of Reserves and Employer Support. “Hosting and participating in CIOR Summer Congress 2018 is a good opportunity for us to demonstrate the professionalism of Canada’s Reserve forces and the Canadian Armed Forces as a whole.”

More than 23 nations participated in discussions on prominent issues related to military reserves including the contribution of reserve forces to international operations, reserve training, education and employer support.

Forging links between reserve officers of many different nations

This annual Summer Congress provided an opportunity for participating nations to forge links between military reserve officers, share best practices, develop viewpoints on issues in support of the NATO alliance, and foster reserve officer professional development.

“The 2nd Canadian Division and the Joint Task Force (East) are proud to welcome and take part in the CIOR Summer Congress in Quebec City,” said Brigadier-General Jennie Carignan, Commander, 2nd Canadian Division. “This is an excellent opportunity to share our Reserve Force’s significant contributions with our allies, take active part in discussions to improve our common practices, and foster our reservists’ professional development. This excellent forum for new ideas and innovative concepts will allow us to continue building a strong and operationally focused Reserve Force.”

Military Competition central to Summer Congress

An integral component of the Summer Congress was a three-day military competition where more than 150 reservists from 23 countries tested their skills in marksmanship, military navigation, land and water obstacle courses, hand grenade throwing, combat first aid knowledge, and the application of the Law of Armed Conflict. Established in 1957, MILCOMP is an internationally recognised competition focused on military skills that challenge the leadership and physical fitness of reservists from different nations.

The Summer Congress ended with closing ceremonies and a gala dinner for all those who attended before dismissal until the Mid Winter Meeting.

The UK took the Presidency of CIOR from the closing of the Summer Congress 2018 till 2020 after a most successful summer congress for which I thank our Canadian friends.

Fundamental shift

– The UK Presidency marks a fundamental shift in the way CIOR does business, says president, UK Army Colonel Chris Argent (R). – For the first time in many years there is certainty as to the next 6 years presidencies (UK, Germany and Estonia) and the UK Presidency will work towards formulating long term strategies and plans looking ahead over this period.

– The UK is a nation committed to the use of Reserves as part of an integrated Defence Force and many thousands of Reservists have served and indeed still are serving in Afghanistan Iraq and other missions around the world. Reservists not only bring their military skills which are placed at the nation’s use but have their civilian and careers enriched by their military commitment, Argent said.

Focussing on the Young Reserve Officer

CIOR provides the opportunity for Reservists of 34 nations to come together in a range of activities intended both to increase personal development, aid retention and improve the quality and breadth of reserve service and also to develop and inform stakeholder nations’ knowledge of Reserves and disseminate best practice. In particular the theme of the UK Presidency ”The Young Reserve Officer” recognises the dialogue needed to attract, train, retain and develop the young leaders of tomorrow’s Reserves.

– I am honoured to have been chosen to lead the UK Presidency. The presidency is ground breaking for being in effect a collaboration between the UK and Estonia, with nearly half of the team being found from our allies. This chimes with the UK’s already close relationship with Estonia in providing ground forces to the Eastern Flank of NATO, Argent emphasized.

Technology and cyber top-of-mind during civil-military cooperation exercise

Canadian Army·Thursday, August 23, 2018


By Second Lieutenant Natalia Flynn, Army Public Affairs

Quebec City, Quebec — Reservist civil-military affairs specialists from 14 nations came together in early August 2018 for the seventh annual CIMEX (Civil-Military Cooperation Exercise), a hands-on training event that kicked off the 2018 Summer Congress of the Interallied Confederation of Reserve and Medical Reserve Officers (CIOR/CIOMR).

For the first time in 28 years, Canada hosted this NATO-endorsed association of Reserve professionals from NATO member countries, Partnership for Peace Programme and non-member nations. The 2018 CIMEX was also the first to be given official status as a NATO training event.

The role of civil-military cooperation (CIMIC) specialists is to help enable more effective cooperation between the military and civilian worlds to the benefit of both. CIMIC specialists meet with civilian leaders of communities in which they deploy to share information and determine the needs and capabilities of the local populace. They then advise their military commanders on effective ways to work with civilian government and non-government organizations during a mission.

Advanced technologies in humanitarian assistance

For three days, CIMEX participants applied their expertise as advisors to their respective militaries on how to best use advanced technologies in humanitarian assistance and disaster response scenarios. Senior officers shared best practices and discussed their experiences of working in challenging environments with multiple players. The exercise concluded with presentations of team-developed solutions for a mock crisis scenario.

Highlights of the teamwork component included trialing virtual battle space technology, led by technicians from the 2nd Canadian Division Simulation Centre at 2nd Canadian Division Support Base Valcartier. CIMEX participants travelled through a three-dimensional representation of the crisis area via unmanned aerial vehicles and other modes of air and ground transportation to survey the terrain for which they were responsible.

Realistic overview

“Virtual battle space technology offers a much more realistic overview of what is happening on the ground during a crisis, which enables users to have a more accurate picture of the situation and make better decisions,” said Lieutenant-Colonel Martin Lessard, Commanding Officer of 35 Combat Engineer Regiment.

Participants were challenged in discussions about the cyber domain and its growing impact on CIMIC. Cyber operators are a relatively new trade in the Canadian Armed Forces. They can expect to face misinformation tactics, hacking and other electronic threats while working with communications infrastructure, which plays a central role in effectively coordinating humanitarian assistance and disaster response missions.

– Reserves are the perfect candidates

Lieutenant-Colonel Norman White, lead Canadian Army planner for CIMEX, was impressed with the collaborative spirit of the exercise and the quality of the plans produced by the teams. “Reservists are the perfect candidates for this type of work, as they often bring a tremendous body of experience with them from their civilian work lives that is very applicable,” he said.

Major Holly Cookson of the United States Air Force Reserve, and a long-time CIMEX planning committee member, said that members’ civilian work experience not only benefits their military occupation, but lessons learned with international military peers during events such as CIMEX can transfer to one’s civilian career as well.


CIOR CIMEX 2017 – Forging greater CIMIC Resilience in Prague


Forging greater CIMIC Resilience in Prague

The international Confédération Interalliée des Officiers de Réserve (CIOR), of which South Africa is a part, includes a Civil-Military Cooperation (CIMIC) Committee. This committee successfully executed its seventh annual CIMEX (CIMIC Exercise) as a preamble to its committee work during the 2017 Summer Congress held in the Czech Republic. The CIMEX was held at the Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague over the weekend of July 27th to 30th, 2017, with the theme “The Migrant Crisis and the Changing Role of CIMIC Resilience and Internal Defence” CIMEX is guided by key overriding objectives: “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 2017 built upon the foundation laid in its 2016 iteration held in Madrid, Spain, expanding on the ‘Refugee Crisis’ topic. It saw some 27 attendees as well as presenters and observers drawn from Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, the Netherlands, Poland, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom (UK) and the United States (US).
Lectures during CIMEX came in many forms, namely on ‘Mass Migration – What it is & Challenges’ by US Colonel Mona Jibril; ‘The World Today’, ‘What is CIMIC – A Dialogue’ and ‘The Military and Resilience’, by UK Lieutenant Colonel Graeme Olley; ‘Internal Defence and Challenges in Countering Violent Extremism’ by Dr Marlen de la Chaux from Germany; ‘Migration Crisis – Legal Implications for the Military’ by Captain Dr Gergely Toth from Hungary; ‘Building a Refugee Reception Center – A German Perspective’ by Lt Col Dr Ralf Scheffel from Germany, and ‘Maritime Migration: Coast Guard Operations & The European Crisis’ by US Coast Guard Commander Eric Driggs.


The practical desktop-based exercise component of CIMEX grouped participants into multi-national teams with two hours at hand to tackle a fictional refugee crisis scenario in a similar fashion to that experienced in CIMEX 2016. This gave participants the opportunity to put their varied CIMIC expertise to use in response to the complex conflict situations which triggered the scenario’s socio-political crisis.

The ‘Exercise Sea Crossing’ scenario involved a large stream of displaced persons moving from one large landmass to another over the ocean. This required syndicates to produce a CIMIC assessment presentation with recommended course of action to be followed. The dynamic nature of the scenario shaped subsequent CIMIC decision making processes by groups. They had to endeavour to promote the safety and security of civilian entities, and yet to support the overall mission commander’s mission and intent. These courses of action were presented by the three groups to the scenario contingent commander.

International Security and Defence Consultant, Lieutenant Colonel Graeme Olley, British Army (Rtd), was on hand to facilitate the CIMEX scenario, devised in concert with CIOR CIMIC Committee members.
In the post-CIMEX 17 feedback committee session, the committee acknowledged an overwhelmingly positive response from the participants. Every category was rated higher than previous responses recorded in 2016. Participants acknowledged a well-chosen theme and excellent lectures, while information added by fellow attendees had allowed them to further develop their own CIMIC capabilities.

During the course of CIMEX 2017, CIOR Council members also attended CIMEX briefings and presentations. Following his attendance, the President of the CIOR, Czech Colonel Arnost Libezny, commented: “While the speakers all presented salient insights to the migration crisis in Europe, the meat of what CIMEX provides comes in the form of the exercise scenario itself.” He added that, “This year’s ‘Exercise Sea Crossing’ scenario that Vanessa and her committee developed allowed the CIMEX participants to really apply the concepts introduced and propose innovative strategies for their nations, both from their combined civilian and military perspectives.”

The CIOR Summer Congress 2017 proved to facilitate a highly productive environment for the development and eventual unanimous acceptance of CIMEX 2018’s theme at CIOR Council level. This will be “The Intersection of CIMIC & Technology: Exploring Information Challenges in Complex Emergencies”. CIMIC Committee members will reconvene in February 2018 at the CIOR’s Winter Meeting at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium to provide content structure for the next CIMEX to be held as part of the 2018 CIOR Summer Congress in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

The CIMIC Committee continues to grow from strength to strength as it strives to fulfil its CIOR constitutional mandate of organising CIMIC symposia and exercises, fostering effective CIMIC in humanitarian aid missions that facilitates aid to civil authorities and communities. The reservist CIMIC practitioner continues to be the epitome of Churchill’s conceptualisation of a reservist as ‘twice the citizen.’

To get the full story and pictures, please have a look at the PDF attached below.


MILCOMP 2017 was a success


Many challenges awaited this year’s competitors in Prague, but have been mastered very successfully

CIOR Military Competition
Concurrent with the CIOR Summer Congress 2017 in Prague, more than 200 athletes were scheduled to participate in CIOR’s military competition – MILCOMP. Established in 1957, MILCOMP is considered one of the most important military sport challenges worldwide. Each year, reservists from NATO countries and associated countries such as Switzerland and South Africa come together to compete in a highly specialized military pentathlon and to identify the world’s fittest reservists. The competition focusses on military skills that truly challenge the leadership and physical robustness of its participants. The disciplines are shooting with rifle and pistol (precision and rapid fire), a 500m long obstacle course, a 50m long water obstacle competition to be mastered in uniform, a military orienteering march event with map reading and range estimation as well as grenade throwing. In addition to the physical challenges, all competitors compete intellectually in tactical first aid and Law of Armed Conflicts (LOAC) competitions. A comprehensive test of physical and mental readiness!

Thus, if you are successful in the CIOR competitions, you can be sure to be one of the world’s fittest reservists in every respect.

Training for the Unpredictable
Teams participating in MILCOMP follow an intense training schedule during the months leading to the CIOR Summer Congress. They prepare the different disciplines with great attention to detail in order to master them for the competition. However, this year’s MILCOMP started with a surprise: A few days before departure to Prague, the teams received the message that competition grounds will not be available and thus, all disciplines have to be improvised spontaneously. As a result, preparation changed to a few hours on the day of the competition instead of an elaborate training concept, which was followed for several months. Despite this unpredicted challenge, teams mastered it greatly as their disciplined training enabled them to adapt quickly – a realistic test of changing conditions, as they happen in military operations and combat.

International Exchange
MILCOMP is also an ideal opportunity to promote and expand one’s own linguistic and intercultural skills. Despite the competition between the nations, sporting fairness ranks first. All teams, instructors and referees are in continuous exchange. The exchange is particularly intense in international teams as individual reservists of different nations compete. An entire week of English-speaking teamwork, especially in situations of physical and mental stress is a unique learning experience for everyone.

Arrival in Prague
After arriving in Prague, the competition began immediately. No detailed tests of competition grounds and material, but instead only a short inspection and then the immediate start of the competition.
In the late afternoon, all teams, together with the other participants of the CIOR / CIOMR Summer Congress, participated in an opening ceremony high above Prague’s old town.

Building an Obstacle Course…
On the first day of MILCOMP, all teams drove to the former Soviet military training ground “Tankodrom Milovidze”. Throughout the next days, they got to know the area well; obstacle course, hand grenade throwing, shooting and orientation took place here. The obstacle course was created after privatization and did not meet military competition standards. 20 obstacles made of wood, ropes and tires, had hitherto only been able to endure recreational usage. 15 minutes of the CIOR competitor’s test were sufficient to proof that not even half of the obstacles could withstand – they were not designed for that much strength and speed. Renovation and reinforcement began immediately. Three hours before the start of the first team, motor saws and hammer-hammering boomed over the course. With success, the reinforced track survived almost all 26 teams. In the end, Team Netherlands 1 finished just ahead of Team Germany 4, followed by Team Finland 1.

… and Set-Up a Shooting Competition
Day 2 of MILCOMP was all about shooting. First, participants shot the rifle disciplines, followed by the pistol disciplines – at around 37°C in the shade. The shooting discipline resulted in yet another unforeseen challenge: The lack of time to adjust the weapons’ sights as usually. But in the end, they mastered it well and Team International 2 finished just ahead of Team France 4, followed by Team Germany 1. Best marksman became Brian Mdlalose from South Africa.

Water Obstacle Course
The third day of MILCOMP offered a very contrasting program: A full day in the swimming pool. However, neither water obstacle course nor enough uniforms for swimming were available. So once again, the jury improvised: US Navy SEAL Commander Grant State developed an alternative based on SEAL training: 12.5m swimming sprint, releasing a fixed buoy, 12m sprint with the buoy in hand or between the teeth, dive and attach the buoy under water, out of the water, twist, head jump, 12.5m sprint, dive and take a 10kg heavy AK47 dummy under water and 12.5m final sprint with the rifle. Team Great Britain 5 scored 829.73 points and thus became first, followed by Team France 2 and Team Germany 4.

In the evening, all participants enjoyed a special entertainment program: The “National Evening” offering Czech specialties at the Hotel International – best food, folkloric performances and music in the heart of Prague.

Orienteering March
The final highlight of every CIOR competition is the orienteering race. Once again, competitors went to the former Soviet military training ground in Milovidze. The practical test in Combat Casualty Care took place at the beginning of the run: First aid to injured players in bunker systems while being under strict supervision of the referees, doctors and paramedics of CIOMR. Then 14km through the rough terrain: Hot, sultry, thorny and overgrown, accompanied by heavy rain towards the end of the run. Some of the maps were from Soviet Union times and thus, required a lot of imagination: How did the tree structure develop over 30 years? Which paths are new and which are no longer recognizable? Which buildings on the military training ground were probably secret and never displayed on a map? At the finishing line, the competitors faced another exciting surprise: Each team had to master a trench full of obstacles carrying sandbags on the shoulders.

Team Germany 4 was the fastest team to run the orienteering course, but were placed 2nd after Team Great Britain 5, that showed superior performance in throwing hand grenades. Team Germany 3 was placed 3rd.

After the Competition
Back in the residence, the athletes celebrated their own achievements with an athletic evening.

The last day started intellectual: 3 hours of presentation, videos and discussion on Law of Armed Conflict (LOAC) with the CIOR Legal Committee and subsequent team-based test.

In the evening, the award ceremony made this year’s MILCOMP results official: Overall, the first place of the MILCOMP went to members of Team Germany 4 who also became the overall winner of the category “Veteran“. The second place was awarded to Team Finland 2, followed by Team Germany 2 placed 3rd, but winning the category “Experienced“. Team International 2 ranked first within the category “International team“. In the category “Novice“, Team Netherlands 1 was able to foster its lead and thus placed first. Team France 3 became the winner of the category “Female team“.

We congratulate all competitors for these excellent results!

Many thanks to the German MILCOMP team for providing pictures and experience reports from the MILCOMP 2017 in Prague.

Sudden Knock-Out or Eventual Points Loss – How Our Security State Will Lose The Fight

Sudden Knock-Out or Eventual Points Loss - How Our Security State Will Lose The Fight


MAY 2017

The 2017 CIOR Seminar, assembling Reserve Officers from some 15 countries, most of them NATO members, took its participants from an opening shock statement through an intellectual exercise to a conceptual training and released them on the last day with the well-deserved satisfaction of having done something useful for the security and future well-being not only of the seminar participants but of the societies represented by Reserve Officers.

“Sudden knock-out or eventual points loss – How our security state will lose the fight” is the shock statement with which the Seminar’s theme was introduced.

Two opening presentations brought back memories, when we, in our respective armed forces, had to find our ways through the challenges of military or disaster relief exercises.

JOEL WINTON confronted us with the reality that successful responses to crises depend more and more on the capacity to bring together stakeholders, who were inexistent in the minds of leaders, particularly military leaders, one generation ago. Those who were inexistent in the minds of leaders, were absent from the hierarchies in charge of responding to crises. But they were never absent from the battlefield or the disaster area. They were simply not asked to contribute to solutions with shared responsibility. The ultimate goal in disaster relief must be that all bodies work together. This was exemplary highlighted by footage of a flock of birds flying like a controlled body. (Cf.

FRED TURNER, then, added to the opening topic the dimension which definitely symbolises and represents modern times, current reality for today’s young generation: the Cyber Space, driven by information technology, invisible on the conventional battlefield, but of decisive relevance for victory or defeat in conflict or disaster. However, there are distinctive current operations and strategic issues for operations in cyber space. Nations are unclear of red lines. National decision makers are reluctant to grant authorities due to their uncertainty about the effects of offensive capabilities and their own national cyber vulnerabilities. Adding to the complexity of cyber space operations, domestic laws create a tangle of interested and responsible parties, and international law is far from settled. All these considerations not only make national cyber operations more complex, but they also add significant friction to cooperation among partners and allies. Yet, due to the global nature of cyber space, cooperation among national organizations and between allies is crucial.

Day Two of the Seminar, provided by the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), and its team of speakers and moderator, focussed on the inter-dependence of Development and Security, the challenges to force-projection for the security of NATO-Members and their partners and the effects of on-going climate change on societies causing man-made conflicts and natural disasters and triggering, thus, mass migrations. We have already summarised the presentations and discussions and the seminar’s acknowledgment that governance is at the heart of most of the problems with this regard. Endeavours for good governance and accountability of authorities are the key for the improvement of the state of the world and of mankind. The thoughtful exchange on NATO on Day Two, finally, should serve as a warning that the balance in defence and security matters has already started to shift. The phase, in Europe, of collecting a peace dividend after the demise of the Soviet Union has ended. All political and strategic signs indicate the need to reverse the trend of the last twenty years and to think of how to focus again on strengthening collective defence in Europe.

The two topics which had opened the seminar became, on Day Three, the subjects which speakers and participants elaborated on in workshops. Two more topics were introduced,

a) a case study of a successful turn-around in the corporate world, the case of DHL Express, by JÖRG ANDRIOF,
b) a case study of a failed response to a terrorist attack on civil society, the Norwegian Utöya tragedy, whose perpetrator I do not name, by HANS BRUN.

Two CONCEPTUAL STUDIES and two CASE STUDIES were the object for interactive workshops in the hands of groups and speakers. These are assertions submitted by groups to the plenary.

In a concept of a successful Emergent Response it is of critical importance to assemble early on all possible stakeholders, symbolically speaking, “welcoming them in one room by a handshake” and, thus, establishing a relationship between actors who have possibly never worked together and were certainly never hierarchically integrated. Relationship is the first basis on which mutual trust has to be built and can be built. Trust only allows to agree on a common purpose for the framework of common action. Trust only is the guarantee for a successful decentralised execution. And decentralised execution is a fundamental requirement, because it is the most efficient and most effective concept for tackling threats to society of an existential nature. Resorting to decentralised execution is a paradigmatic shift from exclusive hierarchy to inclusive thinking and cooperation. It opens the mind to the acknowledgment that one should never underestimate the power of the local people. Reaching out to them would constitute the primary goal in emergent response.

The group in charge of Cyber Risk focused on a) the role of Reservists in building up and bringing to bear Cyber capabilities and b) the new dimension given to Article 5 by Cyber capabilities. Since it is still too early to recognise where the systematic build-up of Cyber capabilities by Defense Ministries and Armed Forces of NATO Members stands, the workshop studied broadly the interest of involving Reservists in this completely new field of military capacity-building. There are benefits, as there are difficulties and impediments, but the provisional assessment indicates that Reservists and in particular Reserve Officers should play a role.

The technological evolution makes also visible how far legal frameworks and legal language can be challenged by new phenomena. While Article 5 and at its core the notion of “attack” seemed to have been, over decades of NATO’s existence, non-controversial, the appearance of a new technology with its specialists and their own minds and language, is creating a formidable potential of confusion and misunderstanding. Information technologists consider themselves as being permanently under Cyber attack. Does this call for Article-5 action? And regardless of “yes” or “no”: what sort of counter-attack would be permissible, what would be beyond levels of competition for intelligence gathering and for strategic influence on others? These questions open completely new aspects of conceptual debates from which we cannot conceive Reserve Officers to abstain in the long run. We believe the participants have identified a field of responsibility for Reserve Officers which goes far beyond technology and deep into political and strategic debates.

The first one, the DHL Express story, came as an instructive and heart-warming encouragement to take the DHL example of a successful turn-around and a most promising further development of profitable and successful business as inspiration. Warfare is never profitable, but Defense has to be successful in order to fulfil the people’s expectations and legitimate demands. DHL is a most welcome encouragement.

The other case study, on Utöya, sadly was of a different nature. It is a warning how easily professional services in charge of security and protection of the people can fail. Of everything that failed, nothing was allowed to fail. Here again, practical conclusions and advice, such as “train the use of equipment, train the deployment of protection forces, train the leadership of those in charge and in command” can remain without consequences, when authorities and the people at large prove to be unable to act accordingly. Perhaps, this is one more field where the Reserve Officer has a role to play in society. Their legitimacy lies in their profile of “a military with a civilian identity and commitment”, or: “a civilian with a military identity and commitment”.

This takes us back to the initial remark about the shock statement “Sudden knock-out – How our security state will lose the fight”. On purpose, the second part of the Seminar’s theme has been omitted. We would like to recall it here and give it an interpretation:

LtCol Hans Garrels, NLD – Chairman
Capt (Navy) Deborah Nelson, USA
Capt Tobias Bosshart, CHE
Capt Michael Seibold, DEU
Capt Sascha Soyk, DEU

Australia invited into CIOR

Australia invited into CIOR

Australia invited into CIOR
2017 Summer Congress in Prague produced a landmark invitation for CIOR in its Partnership for Peace and Outreach dimension. The PfP&O Committee presented the official invitation to the CIOR President for signature, inviting Australia to officially join CIOR. Australia previously participated in Observer status, represented by it’s the reserve association and fully endorsed by its MoD. This result has been obtained after numerous exchanges between CIOR PfP&O committee and the Australian association. If the invitation is positively accepted by the Australian association, we look forward to welcoming our newest CIOR member in 2018.

PfP&O committee way forward after 2017 Summer Congress
Welcoming five new members during the Prague Summer Congress, the PfP & Outreach committee comprises now 10 members dedicated to the vision and mission of the CIOR and the PfP and outreach initiatives directed. With five engagement priority categories established in Prague, the committee developed a new country checklist to focus on continuity of historical engagement action, NATO involvement and CIOR participation for each nation. Besides sending the final invitation for membership to Australia to the CIOR Presidency for signature, we benefited from presentations on the country study of Georgia, as well as discussion about all of our prioritized countries from guest visitors to the committee and a visit/discussion from the Norwegian, Slovenian, Austrian and French VPs. The committee also welcomed a presentation by SPIA president and a EUROMIL summary by PfP&O committee member. Both presentations on the two military associations listed above allowed the committee to assess recommendations to the Council for possible future collaboration and cooperation. The committee also updated its web site verbiage to reflect its new vision and direction (not done since 2010). All committee members accepted assignments on country studies and follow-up engagement tasks regarding the Outreach dimension to present/prepare for action at the next 2018 Mid-Winter Meeting.

7th annual CIMEX – The Migration Crisis

7th annual CIMEX - The Migration Crisis

Reservists, being twice the citizen, with one foot in the civilian world and the other in the military, are ideally suited to carry out the Civil Military Cooperation (CIMIC) role for NATO. The upcoming CIMIC Exercise (CIMEX) during our 2017 Prague Summer Congress, offers a unique opportunity for member nation Reservists to hone their skills.

The Confédération Interalliée des Officiers de Réserve (CIOR)’s Civil-Military Cooperation (CIMIC) Committee remains committed to promoting best practices within the international CIMIC community. CIMEX participants will hear from some of today’s premier speakers addressing NATO-recognized challenges. With over 15 nations participating in this table-top exercise, the CIMEX offers nations a high-impact professional development opportunity for mid-level of cers and enlisted members that encompasses ‘twice- the-citizen’ CIMIC expertise and experience. Registration is limited to the first 50 CIMIC specialists, so please do not delay!

For additional information, please contact:

CIOR CIMIC COMMITTEE Col Vanessa Dornhoefer


Invitation to the Norwegian military skills competition 2017

Invitation to the Norwegian military skills competition 2017

From our Northernmost CIOR Delegation: Norske Reserveoffiserers Forbund (Norwegian Reserve Officers’ Association)

Invitation to the Norwegian military skills competition 2017

The Norwegian Reserve Officers’ Association organizes every year a challenging field competition, aimed at testing field skills and motivate for further training. The competition is a long patrol mission in daylight and darkness. The competition has tasks such as knowledge of the Defence organization and missions, defense knowledge (including NATO), First Aid/Combat Casualty Care, communications, shooting, obstacle courses, crisis management, leadership and general soldier skills.

The teams must be self sufficient during the competition. The competition starts Friday evening, when orders are given to the team leaders, and ends Saturday evening. The competitors consist of teams from the Norwegian Armed Forces, Norwegian reserves and foreign teams.

Saturday evening, after the competition, there will be a social event and barbecue evening. Award ceremony will be on Sunday morning.

This year’s competition will be held the weekend of 15th -17th of September. The location will be at just north of Trondheim, at Værnes Garrison.

Værnes Garrison is located just next to Trondheim Airport Værnes. Quarters will also be here. Transportation to / from Trondheim Airport Værnes can be arranged.

The Norwegian Reserve Officers’ Association would like to challenge YOUR nation to send one or more teams to this fascinating competition. The competition focuses on known training elements of basic military skills. Each team must consist of four people and the team leader must be an officer or sergeant.

You may prepare yourselves by looking at NROFs military skills competition rules (click at the link). The competition language will be English when non-Scandinavian teams are participating.

The NROF would be honored to host teams from your nation, and I encourage you to contact us on e-mail or
call +47 22 47 82 40 for further information. There is an entry fee of € 125 per team.

Please send entries with the names and rank of all team members
to Please also send us the e-mail address and mobile phone number to the teamleader.

Jørgen Berggrav Rear Admiral (rtd) Secretary General
Postal address: PB 1550 Sentrum NO-0015 Oslo



Internationally, the value of the role of reservists is becoming more recognised and the reliance on the use of reservists is increasing. With increasing and rapid technological and social developments it is important that CIOR reviews it operating framework to ensure that it remains an organisation that remains fit for purpose and maintains its credibility. It was for this reason that the President established a Strategic group to carry out a CIOR self-assessment which would inform a strategical study for a renewed CIOR 3.0. The resulting strategic document directs the developments of CIOR towards the future, most importantly by outlining an image of 2020 and beyond.

CIOR is a NATO-affiliated, non-political and non-profit umbrella organisation of member nations’ national reserve officer associations. The relationship between CIOR and NATO is fully defined in NATO Military Committee (MC) 248/1. CIOR has traditionally had two key roles: (1) To provide advice on Reserve issues and support to the NATO Alliance and (2) To foster the professional development of reserve officers.

Over the last few years these roles have come under some pressure in terms of how they are reviewed and valued by NATO and individual Ministries of Defence (MoDs). Despite this it is recognized that in 2016 CIOR has the potential to be recognised as a valuable resource in terms of its access to the Reservist community and how Reservists work at an operational level. However, if CIOR is to continue to be effective, it needs to recognise when and how change is needed, and more importantly be prepared to initiate appropriate change. The world is changing and that means that the (relevant) environment of CIOR has to change. Equally, CIOR needs to acknowledge the rapid pace of change in the society it works within and respond accordingly.

In order to get CIOR ready for the coming years it is essential to consider the factors that are likely to have the most influence on how it should work. The CIOR 3.0 strategy paper considers these as social environmental factors and technical factors. Using this information, the paper considers what would be the key changes that may be required to create a CIOR that is future-proof, healthy, and contemporary. The paper presents this as a number of possible scenarios for consideration by the Council which could be built on to inform the way forward and be agreed as the Strategic plan.

Based on the assessment of these scenario it can be indicated that scenario “(Virtual) Centre of Excellence on reservist in support MoD’s and NATO” is the best scenario for CIOR 3.0. This scenario describes the desirable situation of CIOR in 2020 and beyond. As CIOR is the networking specialist in relation to expertise of, with and by reservists throughout the world, it is capable of quickly and attractively connecting civil and military expertise/competencies and to make these constructively available to its members and business partners. From this specialism CIOR has gained the status of a Virtual Centre of Excellence and optimally uses the technological developments in execution, management, and the maintenance of expertise.

However, considering the expected large changes that this scenario brings along it is essential to also have a backup scenario. Scenario “Social/Veteran network” is an excellent scenario that CIOR can fall back on if the implementation of “(Virtual) Centre of Excellence on reservist in support MoD’s and NATO” does not work out as expected. In order to prevent starting all over when the scenario is deemed unimplementable, we already incorporate some elements of “Social/Veteran network” in the development of scenario.

As a consequence, CIOR defined its concept Mission 2020 and concept Vision 2020 as follows:

Mission 2020
CIOR is the international centre of excellence in the field of military reservist matters with the aim to collect, manage and provide strategical and operational knowledge for its members in order to support consultation and development in the military and/or civil domain within the NATO and its members.

Vision 2020
CIOR achieves this by actively involving its members and to develop, establish and mantain a (virtual) centre of excellence through the combination of technical developments and the use of the social network. In this, CIOR will be an attractive business partner for likeminded organisations and will proactively collaborate with them in a network construction.

In order to successfully implement the previously presented CIOR 3.0 strategy it is essential to use a step by step method within which the Council (VP’s) led by the Presidency supports, sets frameworks, but is also personally involved. CIOR 3.0 plan is not a rigid multiyear plan, but a communal flexible route book of and by its members. The created strategical documents became part of the strategical guidelines for the following years unless otherwise decided by the Council.

CIOR In-Between Meeting in Prague, Czech Republic

CIOR In-Between Meeting in Prague, Czech Republic

After welcoming the delegates from national reserve (officer) associations as well as committee representatives, CIOR President LtCOL. Libezny pointed out that this IBM will serve as a starting point for planning CIOR’s activities to take place during the following two years. As a next step, CIOR Secretary General 1Lt. Hajecek outlined the main objectives for the time of the Czech Presidency as well as milestones to be achieved. He asked all country and committee representatives to work towards these objectives.

Following this introduction, representatives from NFRC, CIOMR and CISOR briefed the IBM participants on their agenda. According to these briefings, one common goal is to increase cooperation and joint planning of events with CIOR. Further, it was proposed to extend the offer of training and education opportunities, ideally recognized by NATO.
In the afternoon, CIOR committees started discussions in separate working groups while the CIOR Council concluded on the output from the 2016 Summer Congress in Madrid, Spain. Further, the activities of the Presidency after the Summer Congress 2017 were reported. After that, the Council discussed the upcoming Winter Meeting 2017 as well as the Summer Congress 2017 and 2018 in order to initiate the planning process.

The first day of IBM was concluded by the PfP&Outreach and MILCOMP Committees reporting on recent activities and events as well as providing an outlook on activities planned for 2016-2018.

CIOR Council and representatives in discussions during the CIOR In-Between Meeting

The morning session of day 2 was dominated by the presentations of the CLA, Symposium workgroup, DEFSEC and Legal Committee chairmen. The presentations outlined the status of ongoing projects and recent events. Further, the chairmen shared the vision of their committees and workgroups for the next two years as well as made participants aware of envisaged changes and key events/ milestones. The participants got the opportunity to actively take part discussing the laid out roadmap.

The afternoon session gave chairmen of the Seminar, CIMIC and Public Affairs committees the opportunity to present the current work of the committees and provide a perspective on the envisaged future development. Also in this Session, participants actively engaged in discussions around these plans.

Today’s session gave the participants the opportunity to become aware of common areas of action, mutual critical success factors as well as potential synergies. The meeting thus created an important corner stone for the next two years to come.
The day was concluded by a dinner with special guests Major General Jaromir Zuna, Director of the Division of Support of the Czech Army and Hynek Novak, Director of the Cabinet of the Czech Minister of Defence, in order to gain forces for the last day of the IBM on Saturday.

Presentation of the CIOR Seminar 2017 by LtCOL. Hans Garrels

The CIOR In-Between Meeting ended with a final review of the discussed topics and mutual agreement of the actions to be taken by all participants.

The conference hall is empty after two long days of discussion. A big thank you goes to the Czech Presidency for hosting this meeting in Prague as well as to all officers participating!

Conference hall after CIOR In-Between Meeting