Cooperation for peacekeeping
On Thursday 11th September 2014, France officially became the 13th partner State to the International Peace Support Training Centre (IPSTC), as Mr Rémi Maréchaux, Ambassador of France to Kenya, signed a Memorandum of Cooperation with IPSTC.
Based in Karen, the IPSTC is a training centre for peacekeeping operations that convenes more than a hundred training sessions a year, in favour of more than 3 000 trainees from East Africa or other sub-Saharan African countries. Most of those trainees are high-level military executives, as well as policemen or civilians.
The centre was created in 2006 and funded by the UK, with a Kenyan contribution. It is first of all an international centre, regarding its trainees, its instructors and its partners. But it is also a Kenyan institution that grew quickly by adapting its training offers to the specific regional needs: engaging in operations like in Somalia (AMISOM), participating in the strengthening of the eastern regional brigade (EASTBRIG) of Eastern Africa Stand-by Force (EASF). The centre also developed an important network of contributing partners.
In practice, France has already been participating in the running of the centre since 2007 mainly by providing it with a military aid worker from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development (MAEDI/ Security and Defence Cooperation Department). Being an experienced military executive, this aid worker has rapidly been appointed as a Chief of Staff, a crucial position in this institution. He is virtually the Operational Assistant to the Kenyan Commander of the centre, having authority on strategic direction functions such as making and updating of the strategic plan, planning the activities, and managing finances and human resources.
France is also participating in the training of the centre thanks to the support of the French troops in Djibouti (FFDJ) and to the participation of national experts (GIGN/Special French forces).