COAS CONCLUDES US VISIT

COAS Gen Gaurav SJB Rana returns from an official visit to US on Monday, May 12, 2014. Chief of the General Staff (CGS), Lt Gen Pawan Bahadur Pande welcomed him at Tribhuwan International Airport (TIA) amid a function organized in his honor. A troop presented Guard of Honor on his arrival. COAS Gen Rana left for US on April 26, 2014 to participate in the International Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony (IHOF) at US Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. COS Lt Gen Pradip Bikram Rana and Valley Div Commander Maj Gen Himalaya Thapa accompanied him throughout his visit. During the visit, Gen Rana held several meetings with high level US Military, Department of Defense and State Department officials. On April 28, Gen Rana met Admiral Samuel Locklear III, Commander of US PACOM along with Mr. Peter W. Bodde, HE Ambassador to Nepal. COAS Gen Rana also held round table discussions with the Joint Directors of USPACOM on Nepal's overall security Co-operation, Professionalization of NCO Corps, Humanitarian Assistance and DIsaster Relief (HADR) and Health Care Mgmt/Planning aspects. On the same day, he had office calls with MARFORPAC Commanding general, Lt Gen Robling, Center for Excellence (CFE) Dir, Dr. Pam Milligan, and Asia pacific Center for Security Studies (APCSS) Dep Dir, Brig Gen (Retd) James Hirai. Several topics on HADR, Disaster Response Exercise and Exchange (DREE), training programs were discussed on the occasion. COAS Gen Rana also addressed Advance Security Cooperation Course at APCSS on "Nepal's experience dealing with security cooperation challenges and building a cooperative strategy." On April 29, Gen Rana visited US Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) in San Francisco. During the visit, Gen Rana was briefed about the overall functioning of NPS. Gen Rana also met with Richard Hoffman, Director of Center for Civil-Military Relations (CCMR). Senior Lecturer Mr. John Feely, Mr. Mathew Vaccaro, Manager of Relief & recovery Program and Ms. Jeane Giralado of Defense Institution Reform Initiative (DIRI) were also present during the meeting. The salient points of discussion were Post Conflict Civil-Military Relations, MOD and Military Relations & Security Sector Reform (SSR). On May 01, Gen Rana attended the International Hall of Fame (IHOF) Induction Ceremony organized at US Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Amid a special ceremony, Gen Rana's Portrait was inducted into the International Hall of Fame in Lewis & Clark Center, Eisenhower Auditorium. Gen Rana was graduated from the Command & General Staff College in 1989. Gen Vincent Brooks, Commanding General of US Army Pacific (USARPC), Lt Gen Robert B. Brown, Commanding General of Combined Arms Center & Fort Leavenworth and other high ranking US army officials were also present during the ceremony. After the ceremony, he called on Gen Vincent Brooks, Commanding General, USARPC where issues of bilateral interest were discussed. On 2 May, COAS Gen Rana held several meetings with high level US State Department officials including Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary (PDAS) for South and Central Asia, Mr Richard Hoagland, Assistant Secretary for Political- Military Affairs, Mr. Punnet Talwar, Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources, Ms Heather Higginbottom, Director of International Foundation for Electoral Systems, Mr. Bill Sweeney and Vice President of Asia Foundation Ms Nancy Yuan. The other pertinent meetings of the day were with Uzra Zeya, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and Mr. Rajib Shah, Administrator of USAID. Meetings were focused on Mil to Mil assistance, security cooperation, civil-military relations and overall bilateral issues. On May 05, Gen Rana held high level talks with the US Department of Defense officials at Pentagon. Gen Rana held bilateral talks with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) authorities concerned with the regional security and other matters of interest. Gen Rana also held talks with Anna Witkowsky, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Stability Operations and Rule of Law. The talks were focused on Nepal's peace process and assistance that can be provided to Nepal and the Nepalese Army related to HADR. Likewise, Gen Rana met with Dr. Amy Searight, Principal Director for East Asia of Asian and Pacific Security Affairs (APSA), Lt Gen T. Grisoil, Director of the Army Staff (DAS), and Vice Admiral Joseph W. Rixey, from Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) where several matters of bilateral interest were discussed. Later on that day, Gen Rana visited National Defence University (NDU) and met with senior representatives of Near East South Asia (NESA) center. On his arrival to NDU, he was welcomed by Ambassador Ms. Wanda Nesbitt, Senior Vice President of NDU. The final day of his official visit was remarked by his visit to Defense Institute for Medical Operations (DIMO) and Brook Army Medical Center (BAMC) where he acquired information about DIMO and also discussed about the various issues on Medical Service Corps, hospital administration and NA's current health planning and concerned challenges. During the visit to BAMC, Gen Rana also met Maj Gen Jimmie Keenan, Commanding General of South Regional Medical Command and the duo discussed on the present medical plan of NA & medical challenges. Gen Rana was also briefed on Hospital Incident Command System (HICS) and Trauma Center Roles in Disaster Response. Gen Rana also paid a visit to the Center for Intrepid (CFI) within BAMC and acquired information about the ongoing rehabilitation program. The COAS visit to US has been very fruitful. Nepalese Army is hopeful that this visit will help to promote professional military ties and further Mil to Mil cooperation and also fostering diplomatic relation between the two countries.