Army Commander Daya Ratnayake on Monday met Chief of Staff of the US Army, General Raymond T. Odierno in New Zealand and exchanged views on bilateral importance and mutual interest.
Army Commander Ratnayake, is currently in Auckland, New Zealand, attending the biennial 8th Pacific Armies Chiefs Conference (PACC), themed on “The sum is greater than the parts – 21st century peace operations in a United Nations context”, organized jointly by US and New Zealand Armies, the Army said.
He was accompanied by Security Force Commander- Wanni Major General Boniface Perera. In addition, the visiting Commander also met Lieutenant General Pawan Pande, Chief of Army Staff, Nepal, members of the Indian and Bangladesh delegations and Mr Aruna Abeygunasekara, Consul for Sri Lanka. During these interactive meetings, exchange of mementos took place as tokens of goodwill and cooperation.
The army headquarters also said that the PACC provides a forum for regional Chiefs of Army (COAs) to exchange views, establish, enhance interpersonal relationships and foster security cooperation and enables interactive sessions with the attendees of the ongoing 37th Pacific Armies Management Seminar (PAMS) which will be inaugurated around the same time and focus on a combination of in-depth discussions.
New Zealand’s Chief of Army and the Chief of Staff, US Army serve as the co-hosts for the PACC where multilateral sessions are to emphasize ‘advancing unity of effort in peace keeping operation’, ‘duty of care to our greatest UN contribution – our people’, ‘the challenges for land forces in support of peace keeping operation,’ and ‘sharing the future peace operations space and maximizing the land forces input’ during the four-day (Sept 9 - 12) conference.
The shared ceremonial inauguration of the PACC and PAMS sessions got underway Monday (9) morning with the opening addresses, made by US Chief of Staff General Raymond T. Odierno and New Zealand’s Chief of Army Major General Arthur David Gawn.
The PAMS, a parallel multinational military seminar, providing a forum for exchange of views between regional, senior-level and ground force officers offers the opportunity to establish and enhance strong interpersonal relationships among the future leaders of regional Armies.