In a press release this week British defense secretary, Michael Fallon, said: “Training with Sierra Leonean forces is just the latest example of the U.K. stepping up globally to tackle international threats that put Britain at risk.”
Britain’s armed forces would conduct training exercises alongside troops from the small West African nation for the first time, he announced, adding that the exercises highlighted his country’s commitment to maintaining combat readiness in addition to supporting security on the continent.
The communication further stated that the upcoming deployment comes as UK warships patrolled the region for terrorism and pirate-related activities, adding that Royal Navy warships were already scanning the area for human smugglers and arms traffickers.
“Wherever terrorism rears its ugly head, Britain will continue to back our friends as they work to defeat threats posed by these barbaric groups, including Daesh, Boko Haram and Al-Shabaab,” Fallon added.
Sierra Leone’s military is relatively small compared to conventional Western forces, employing around 13,000 personnel. In addition to Britain, the force had received support from China, Ukraine, Belarus, and the United States.