KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – The sixth annual Bersama Warrior multinational exercise began March 11 with an opening ceremony officiated by Malaysian Armed Forces Joint Force Headquarters Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Abd Malik bin Jiran and U.S. Army 25th Infantry Division Commander Maj. Gen. James B. Jarrard.
Bersama Warrior is a joint and bilateral exercise sponsored by U.S. Indo-Pacific Command and hosted by the Malaysian Armed Forces. This year's 10-day iteration is a staff exercise providing planning for the Bersama Warrior 2021 Command Post Exercise.
"As the aim of this exercise is to enhance interoperability and build capacity to plan and conduct joint and multinational operations at the operational level, it provides a great opportunity for all participants to exchange ideas and experiences as the multinational force," Jiran said.
Exchanging ideas and experiences during Bersama Warrior was a primary goal for the 29 members from the Washington National Guard, a state partner with the Malaysian Armed Forces and the primary training audience for the exercise.
Since signing their formal partnership through the National Guard Bureau sponsored State Partnership Program in August 2017, the Washington National Guard and the Malaysian Armed Forces have met regularly through exercises like Bersama Warrior to enhance their mutual capabilities and security cooperation.
Both countries will plan and coordinate peace enforcement operations, including counterterrorism and humanitarian assistance missions, using military decision-making and multinational forces' standard operating procedures.
Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines will build relationships with their multinational brethren.
"We must also endeavor to greater enhance our networking and develop a strong sense of comradeship," Jiran said.
The exercise runs through March 20.