A three-day exercise campaign on post-earthquake search and rescue, jointly initiated by Bangladesh and the United States (US), ended in Dhaka on Thursday.
Foreign Minister Dr. A. K. Abdul Momen was present as the chief guest while State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Dr Md Enamur Rahman attended as the special guest, said ISPR.
Dhaka North City Corporation Mayor Atiqul Islam , Chief of Army Staff General Lt General SM Shafiuddin Ahmed, Acting Chief of Naval Staff Rear Admiral M Ashraful Haque, Air Vice Marshal
Shafiqul Alam were also present. Senior civilian officials, ambassadors of participating countries, military advisers and diplomats, were also present.
Lt. Gen. Waqar-uz-Zaman, Principal Staff Officer of the Armed Forces Division, Md. Mohsin, Secretary, Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief and Earl R. Miller, Ambassador of the United States of America, addressed the closing ceremony.
The exercise, was jointly ventured between the Bangladesh Armed Forces and the US Army, titled 'Disaster Response, Exercise and Exchange-2021'(DREE) at Army Golf Club in Dhaka.
This biggest earthquake and disaster management exercise in Asia-Pacific region has been held in Dhaka since 2010. This year the exercise was held following the Covid-19 health protocol. More than 300 representatives of 147 organizations from 23 countries participated in it.
The countries are Bangladesh, Nepal, India, US, United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, Bhutan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Australia, Indonesia, Philippines, Turkey, Fiji, Mongolia, Laos, Kenya, Germany, New Zealand, Singapore, Nigeria and China.
The participants represented various ministries, agencies and NGOs. Besides, students and volunteers from different universities studying disaster management are taking part in the exercise.
This year the number of participants was limited to ensure the Covid Protocol. In addition, this was the first time that physical and virtual participation has created an opportunity for participants around the world to join this exercise from home and abroad.
The concluding ceremony was attended by senior military and civilian officials, military advisers and diplomats from the participating countries, among others.