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Montana Air Guard Demonstrates Equipment to Partner Sri Lanka

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Devin Doskey,
  • 120th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

GREAT FALLS, Mont – The 36th Contingency Response Squadron assigned to Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, organized a Mobile Training Team event between the Sri Lanka Air Force and the 120th Airlift Wing, Montana Air National Guard, Sept. 8-12.

Airmen from the 120th Logistics Readiness Squadron and 120th Maintenance Squadron showed 15 members of the Sri Lanka Air Force how to use aircraft loading and refueling equipment they will receive next year from the Department of Defense under the Building Partner Capacity Program.

The program builds partnerships with foreign nations by providing military and equipment training to enhance their capabilities.

During the four-day Mobile Training Team event, the 120th AW Airmen worked with the Sri Lanka Air Force members on pallet buildup, refuel/defuel procedures, forklift operations, weight and balance calculation, loading and unloading aircraft.

“We brought a mix of pilots, loadmasters, crew chiefs, fuel specialist, maintenance officers and logistics officers on this Mobile Training Team,” said Danushka Premadasa, Sri Lanka Air Force wing commander. “We got to see and use this equipment; it is going to help us effectively use this new equipment for our refueling and loading operations.”

This isn’t the first time Airmen from the 120th AW have worked alongside their Sri Lanka Air Force counterparts. Over the last year, the 120th AW and Sri Lanka Air Force have worked together several times as part of the State Partnership Program. 

Through the SPP, the Montana National Guard conducts military-to-military engagements with Sri Lanka to support defense security goals while facilitating engagements spanning military, government, economic and social spheres.

This international partnership strengthens government relations while building a network of allies throughout the U.S. and Indo-Pacific Command.

“It was great to have the Sri Lanka Air Force members here again,” said Master Sgt. Mark Payton, 120th Logistics Readiness Squadron, aircraft fuels technician. “This is the second time I have worked with them, and it provides a great atmosphere of sharing knowledge while learning about each other’s cultures.”