Kosovo: Silver Saber 2021 concluded

(To Greater Defense)

The 2021 edition of the “Silver Saber”, the annual inter-agency exercise supervised by the NATO Kosovo Force (KFOR) in collaboration with Kosovar security institutions, has ended.

La Silver Saber 2021 took place, in compliance with the regulations aimed at limiting the spread of the coronavirus infection, with the ambitious goal of testing the response in the field by all the Kosovar rescue organizations (KSO) and local authorities in the event of public magnet.

For 3 days the KSOs amalgamated and trained by simulating joint interventions in complex emergency situations due to seismic shocks, particularly adverse weather conditions, floods, landslides at the Gjakova / Đakovica airfield and simultaneously in other locations in the province. and landslides, bacteriological threats and reclamation of unexploded ordnance in contexts of urban conglomerates and production activities. 

The exercise required the construction of a joint operations center composed of elements of the Kosovo Police (KP), the Kosovo Security Force (KSF), the Kosovar Red Cross and other local organizations related to rescue in the event of disaster management, led by the Emergency Management Agency (EMA) - Kosovo institution structured on the model of the Italian Civil Protection.

Emergency interventions on the ground and immediate relief to the population involved arrived both by land through a complex deployment of logistic means from all the organizations involved, and by air thanks to the simultaneous use of KFOR helicopters.

KFOR was involved in all exercises Silver Saber since 2012, with the aim of training KSOs and helping them to develop the skills necessary to deal with natural emergencies in disaster management contexts on the model created by the Italian Armed Forces and the National Civil Protection through the VARDIREX (Various Disaster Relief Management exercises) Exercise).

In recent years, important progress has been made, culminating in the 2021 edition with a greater involvement of KSOs: in fact, for the first time Silver Saber, was fully developed and planned by the Kosovar institutions with the sole supervision and evaluation provided by experienced KFOR staff.

As the commander of KFOR, Major General Franco Federici pointed out: The KSOs are fully involved in programs and experiments that aim to achieve a greater capacity for intervention in synergy with all the other organizations that deal with forecasts and relief in the event of natural disasters and environmental disasters, what essentially represented one of the main purposes of the Silver Saber 2021.

KFOR, in full compliance with its mandate descending from resolution UN 1244 of '99, remains careful to maintain a safe environment in this area for all the communities of Kosovo and - as seen also on this occasion - to support the development of KSF in 'scope of its original mandate, namely that of a civil protection force within the broader Kosovo Security Organization.

In this context, I believe that the Italian emergency response system is also a model for Kosovo's security organizations.