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African Partnership Flight takes off in Senegal

Staff Sgt. Jessica Ancheta, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa protocol specialist, prepares the U.S. flag for the opening ceremony of African Partnership Flight in Dakar, Senegal, June 16, 2014. USAFE-AFAFRICA Airmen are in Senegal for APF, a program designed to improve communication and interoperabilty between regional partners in Africa. The African partners include Senegal, Togo, Burkina Faso, Benin, Ghana, Mauritania, Nigeria and Niger with the U.S. helping with organization. (U.S. Air Force photo/ Staff Sgt. Ryan Crane)

Staff Sgt. Jessica Ancheta, U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa protocol specialist, prepares the U.S. flag for the opening ceremony of African Partnership Flight in Dakar, Senegal, June 16, 2014. USAFE-AFAFRICA Airmen are in Senegal for APF, a program designed to improve communication and interoperabilty between regional partners in Africa. The African partners include Senegal, Togo, Burkina Faso, Benin, Ghana, Mauritania, Nigeria and Niger with the U.S. helping with organization. (U.S. Air Force photo/ Staff Sgt. Ryan Crane)

DAKAR, Senegal (AFNS) -- More than 40 U.S. Air Force Airmen arrived June 16 to participate in African Partnership Flight, co-hosted by Senegal and the U.S.

The opening ceremony marked the first day of instruction and partnership with the attending African partners.

This event will feature Airmen from eight African countries including, Senegal, Togo, Ghana, Benin, Mauritania, Niger and Nigeria and Burkina Faso.

"African Partnership Flight is used to develop interoperability and regional cooperation between African countries," said. Maj. James Renfro, APF mission commander. "We want to develop communication between the separate countries so that if something does happen they are already familiar with each other and can assist their partners in a time of need."

African Partnership Flight is a collaborative learning environment, which helps air forces from the U.S. and partner nations in Africa work better together. The first APF was hosted in March 2012 and the program has since become a premier program for U.S. Africa Command to help foster security and stability throughout Africa.

This APF includes classroom discussions as well as hands-on experience with topics including mission planning, aeromedical evacuation, cargo loading, base defense and ground and flight safety.

Throughout the week of APF, the USAFE Band will be performing outreach events for the community and local schools.

The overall goal of APF is to strengthen the partnerships between the United States and air forces in Africa to continue building regional air force cooperation capabilities.

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