Joint US-Mozambique military exercises begin for peacekeeping, emergency relief missions

MAPUTO, Mozambique (AP) — Defense officials say a week of joint military exercises with U.S. troops began in southern Mozambique for training in peacekeeping and emergency relief missions.

At least 800 Mozambican personnel are taking part alongside some 700 Americans, the defense ministry in Maputo said in a statement Wednesday.

The exercises, scheduled to end Aug. 12, include "a conflict zone" environment to practice peacekeeping operations.

Mozambique's military has been deployed during flooding emergencies in low-lying areas of the coastal eastern African nation in recent years.

The continentwide African Union is also trying to reinforce its troops fighting Islamic militants in conflict-torn Somalia.