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News | Feb. 1, 2021

Panamanian and US forces conclude humanitarian exercise Mercury

Joint Task Force Bravo, United States Southern Command, the Panamanian National Aeronaval Service (Senan) and National Border Service (Senafront) held a closing ceremony for humanitarian exercise “Mercury” today.

For more than two weeks, Joint Task Force Bravo, Senan and Senafront conducted exercises in coordinated response to natural disasters and moved more than 700,000 pounds of food, construction materials, educational, medical and other supplies to areas of difficult access in the province of Darién.

“I am very impressed with the level of cooperation between Panamanian and U.S. forces, it certainly helped make this mission a success,” said United States Army Colonel John D. Lichtfield, commander of JTF-Bravo.

"It’s this type of training that ensures that we can integrate without major obstacles with our partners, in case Panama needs our assistance again," added Lichtfield, referring to the U.S. response during the aftermath of Hurricane Eta, in November 2020.

This is the second iteration of Exercise Mercury, which included the participation of approximately 100 U.S. service members as well as the use of seven helicopters to conduct the exercise between January 17 and February 1.

Exercise Mercury is a combined interoperability training that brought participants together to provide humanitarian support, improve our processes and procedures, and enhance the participants’ overall readiness to respond to a disaster or crisis, while demonstrating U.S. Southern Command’s enduring promise to the Americas.