British and French paratroopers are now ready to deploy together on joint operations, say the British Army.
Across two demanding weeks in south west France, Exercise Falcon Amarante is testing the Airborne Combined Joint Expeditionary Force (A-CJEF) – a partnership between 16 Air Assault Brigade and 11e Brigade Parachutiste.
The two brigades provide the airborne rapid reaction forces for their respective armies, and the A-CJEF has been trained and ready since 2013 to deploy on short-notice operations ranging from war fighting to disaster relief.
According to a news release:
“Exercise Falcon Amarante is the A-CJEF’s annual test exercise, taking place this year under 11e BP’s command. Some 650 British troops and 170 vehicles of the 3 PARA Battlegroup – built around the airborne infantry of 3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment bolstered by artillery, engineers, medics, signallers and logisticians – are taking part.
British troops will be paired with the 3e Regiment de Parachutistes d’Infanterie de Marine as the A-CJEF, with US paratroopers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade working alongside it.”
After mission planning and reconnaissance, the exercises started in earnest on Wednesday with some 600 British, French and US paratroopers jumping onto the Caylus training area near Toulouse. From there, a series of simulated missions will test the skills and capabilities of the 2,000-strong force.