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Regiment to hold military exercise this weekend

More than 300 Bermuda Regiment soldiers will be stationed at key points around the Island this weekend in preparation for an annual training exercise in the US.

The “confirmatory training exercise”, labelled April Advance, is designed to ensure the participants “are able to make the most of the two-week training camp at Camp Lejeune.”

Soldiers will be stationed at key points, “mostly in Dockyard in the west and Ferry Reach in the east” to conduct internal security procedures and public order skills.

Training Officer Major Martin Wyer said: “It is cost-effective to get as much done here as we can so we can get the most out of our annual overseas training.

“We already do as much as we can on-Island, but we are constrained by the physical limitations and size of Bermuda.”

The contingent of soldiers will participate in the weekend exercise just “weeks before they leave for the US Marine Corps base in North Carolina” for two weeks of intensive training.

“It’s the culmination of all the training we have done in the Regiment in this training year — April Advance is the last Regimental exercise to put that into practice,” said Maj Wyer.

The US training will use “some of the most hi-tech military equipment available in an exercise dubbed Island Warrior”.

He added: “It’s an internal security-based exercise designed to ensure that we can put our intensive training into practice to protect key assets.”

The local exercise will take place this Friday and Saturday, and members of the public “should expect a lot of troop movements via vehicle, foot, and on the waterways via the Boat Troop”.

Troops from the Junior Non-Commissioned Officers Cadre (JNCO) are scheduled to play agitators in a role designed to test responses by the troops guarding key areas.

The Junior Leader’s will also be involved acting as simulated civilian population to enhance the realism of the training. But the Training Officer stressed that they “aren’t going to be in any danger” from the activities.

Said Maj Wyer: “It will all be in areas where it’s very clear where we are and the public should not be alarmed. The Bermuda Police Service is aware of our training and we also thank Wedco for their assistance in allowing us to use some of their facilities.

“There may be blank ammunition fired and there may be some mock demonstrations, but it will all be done in a very controlled way and there will be absolutely no danger to the public.”

He also noted that the Bermuda Regiment operates “in line with UK and Canadian standards”.

“It’s vital we regularly carry out exercises like this. The Regiment has a variety of roles, from hurricane and disaster relief to ceremonial duties, as well as public order obligation.

“We train rigorously for the worst to help make sure the worst never happens and we take our responsibilities very seriously,” he said.

For more information call 238-1045 or visit www.bermudaregiment.bm

More than 300 Bermuda Regiment soldiers will take over key points across the Island at the weekend as troops build up to their annual overseas exercise, scheduled this year to take place in the US.

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Published April 02, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated April 02, 2013 at 12:18 am)

Regiment to hold military exercise this weekend

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