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Colombian Army establishes new brigade to help with humanitarian assistance operations

The Colombian military created a new brigade on 26 November tasked with humanitarian assistance/disaster relief operations in the face of worsening extreme weather events due to climate change. The new brigade (Brigada de Atención y Prevención de Desastres del Ejército Nacional: BRIAD) is composed of two battalions, consisting of 950 troops, with army Colonel Juan Fernando Carmona Cardona appointed as the brigade's first commander.

A Colombian Army colonel currently in the active reserve recently told Janes that, while the military has traditionally assisted with humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations, “climate change has prompted the creation of the BRIAD with specific capabilities.” Similarly, during the 26 November ceremony to stand up the brigade, Colombian President Ivan Duque noted that BRIAD can be deployed when there are “floods, droughts, earthquakes, [and] mudslides”, and assist citizens affected by the climate crisis.

BRIAD will work along with a civilian agency, the National Unit for Disaster Risk Management (Unidad Nacional para la Gestión del Riesgo de Desastres), to determine how to best assist Colombians hit by environmental disasters.

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