DoD News, Defense Media Activity
WASHINGTON, July 27, 2015 – The U.S. Defense Department and the United Kingdom’s Defense Ministry signed a memorandum of understanding today that officials say signifies expanding international relationships while serving a valuable role in security cooperation.
Maj. Gen. John Crackett of the British army, assistant chief of the defense staff for reserves and cadets, and Paul D. Patrick, deputy assistant secretary of defense for reserve readiness, training and mobilization, signed the Military Reserve Exchange Program memorandum.
“This memorandum of understanding between the U.S. and United Kingdom provides ongoing proof of our continued dedication to our long-standing international relationships,” Patrick said. “The Foreign Resident Program strengthens the partnership between our two nations and plays a key role in maintaining individual readiness of reservists and their contribution to national defense.”
The signing ceremony formalizes a unique agreement between the two nations to allow reservists residing overseas to train with a host-nation unit. Training this way allows reservists to stay engaged and meet their service commitments while opening up opportunities they may have not had in the past, officials said.
First of Its Kind
“This is the first arrangement of its kind,” Patrick said. “It demonstrates commitment to our people and their employers by providing more flexibility to meet their requirements and offers unique training opportunities.”
In addition, the ceremony recognized the 30th anniversary of the countries’ Military Reserve Exchange Program. Since the program’s memorandum of understanding was signed in 1985, almost 3,000 reservists from both nations have participated in the program.
Maj. Gen. Richard Cripwell of the British army, defense attache and head of the British Defense Staff in the United States, presided over the event.