NEWS | Oct. 5, 2016

Puerto Rico's adjutant general visits Dominican Republic under State Partnership Program

By Lt. Col. Ruth E. Diaz Puerto Rico National Guard

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - The adjutant general of Puerto Rico, Brig. Gen. Marta Carcana, concluded an official two-day leadership visit to the Dominican Republic as part of the National Guard Bureau's State Partnership Program.

During the visit to the Caribbean partner nation, Carcana visited many military and civilian leaders, to include the Office of the Commandant of the Dominican Republic Armed Forces, Office of the Vice Minister of Terrestrial Affairs, the Dominican Air Force and the Dominican Emergency Operations Center. United States Ambassador James W. Brewster met with Brig. Gen. Carcana to discuss the military exchanges between the Puerto Rico National Guard and Dominican Armed Forces.

Presently, 18 US states have active partnerships with defense and security forces of 27 countries in the Caribbean, Central America and South America.

"The relationship between the Dominican Republic and our Puerto Rican brothers and sisters goes beyond sharing and exchanging knowledge on emergency management in the face of natural disasters, it is a bond of brotherhood and fraternity as we are both Caribbean," said Brig. Gen. Juan M. Méndez, director of emergency operations for the Dominican Republic.

"Our Citizen-Soldiers and Airmen firmly believe in the importance and benefits of the State Partnership Program. By having partners like the Dominican Republic so close to us, it allows us to exchange ideas and conduct workshops with subject matter experts, especially on the topic of emergencies during natural catastrophes," said Carcana.

During the last 13 years this program has had different events in terms of military exchanges, and workshops with experts in various topics of common interest like security, aviation, logistics, engineering, communications, medical attention, humanitarian assistance, operation planning, professional development, immediate response exercises, as well as mission command at the operational and tactical levels.