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232e session in French Guiana

The 48 auditors from the session in French Guiana met in Cayenne on 23 May 2023 for the launch of this training course organised by the Institut des hautes études de défense nationale (IHEDN), with the support of the Ministry for Overseas France (DGOM).

They were warmly welcomed to the Collectivité territoriale de Guyane (CTG) by its President, Mr Gabriel Serville, and by Major General Xavier Buisson, COMSUP of the Armed Forces in French Guiana. Prefect Denis Conus, Deputy Director of the IHEDN, gave the opening address, before Prefect Thierry QueffelecThe prefect of the French Guiana region welcomes our listeners.

The programme and the various stages of the session, in French Guiana for the first and third weeks and in Martinique and Guadeloupe for the second, were presented by Air Force Brigadier General Thierry Dapsenssession director.

In the afternoon, listeners were treated to a panorama of the contemporary world delivered by  Mr Guillaume Lasconjariashead of the studies and research department at IHEDN. The day ended with an ice-breaker to encourage exchanges and cohesion between the participants.

The session in French Guiana is off to a good start with 48 auditors, 36 from French Guiana and 12 from the West Indies.

Week 1

To mark the 1re 232 weeke session in French Guiana, the auditors were immediately immersed in the educational triptych specific to the institute: visits to sites linked to defence, security and industry, high-level conferences and committee work.

On 24 May, the auditors were welcomed by Colonel Aribaudcommander of the 9th RIMA, in order to understand the challenges of the HARPIE mission and the fight against illegal gold mining, and then at Air Force Base 367, by Colonel Olivier Fleury.

The following day, a visit to the Centre d'Entrainement en Forêt Equatorial (CEFE) on the 3e REI plunged listeners into a unique experience. On the programme: a presentation of the centre and the dangers of a hostile environment, a canoe trip and a night in a bivouac.

Conferences on the lessons of the war in Ukraine and on economic intelligence highlighted contemporary issues in national defence.

From 29 May, the 48 listeners will travel to Martinique and then Guadeloupe to follow the 2e week of this training course, with national content and format, rolled out across the region.

week 2

After a first week in French Guiana and before returning for a third, the 48 listeners to 232e  session in French Guiana, flew to the West Indies on 29 May for the week's internship.

They then headed for Martinique, where they continued their tour with a visit to the Fort-de-France naval base. They were welcomed by Commander Gilles RémignonThe audience was given a presentation of the site, its ships and its missions. The audience was also introduced to the fleet support service. Rear Admiral Eric AymardCOMSUP FAA, then met with the audience. He gave them a geopolitical overview of the Caribbean and presented the operational missions of the armed forces in the French West Indies, in particular the capabilities available to protect the population in the event of major events (HADR mission).

The presentation and tour of the SARA refinery in the French West Indies, attended by Managing Director Olivier Cotta and its Director of Operations Jean-François RochefortIn the course of the day, listeners were immersed in a site that is eminently strategic for the region.

The rest of the week's programme includes a trip to Guadeloupe aboard the French Air Force's A 330 MRTT and a visit to the Bouillante geothermal power station; meetings with the prefects of Guadeloupe and Martinique; other high-level conferences and committee work.

During their visit to Guadeloupe on 31 May, auditors from the 232nd session in French Guiana discovered the Bouillante geothermal power station. They were then received at the prefectural residence by Xavier Lefort, prefect of Guadeloupe.

At the end of the day, the listeners returned to Martinique on board an A 330 MRTT of the French Air and Space Force to be received by Rear Admiral Eric Aymard, COMSUP FAA.

The programme for the end of 2th The week will also see new high-level conferences on the armed forces budget, cross-border cooperation and geopolitical issues in the Caribbean; a speech by Jean-Christophe Bouvier, Prefect of Martinique, on inter-ministerial cooperation in the French West Indies; and a presentation of the missions of the Adapted Military Service Regiment (RSMA), followed by a tour of the technical facilities.

For the final week of the 232nd regional session, the auditors returned to French Guiana for the end of committee work, a visit to the Guiana Space Centre (CSG) and further lectures, in particular from the COMSUP FAG, the Cayenne public prosecutor and the French ambassador to Suriname and Guyana.

WEEK 3

During the last week of the 232nd session in French Guiana, the 48 auditors attended new conferences given by high-level civilian and military authorities: the strategic dialogue of the Guiana Plateau as seen from Paramaribo and Guyana, by the French Ambassador to Suriname, Nicolas de Bouillane de Lacostealso ambassador to the Cooperative Republic of Guyana and France's representative to the Caribbean Community (CARICOM); France's place in the region, by Major General of the Air Force Xavier BuissonCOMSUP FAG; safety issues in French Guiana by Mr Joël SollierCayenne's Attorney General; the major challenges facing French Guyana, at a reception held at the prefectural residence by Prefect Thierry Queffelecprefect of the French Guiana region; space defence strategy, by Colonel Olivier FleuryCommander of BA 367 and Senior Air Defence Authority (HADA).

At the gendarmerie command, the auditors attended an intervention by the General Jean-Christophe Sintive, COMGEND Guyane, and a demonstration of intervention capabilities prepared by the GIGN branch in French Guiana.

Finally, during a visit to the Guiana Space Centre (CSG), the audience was immersed in the exo-atmospheric environment. They discovered the Jupiter room, the launch complexes for the Ariane 5 and 6 rockets and the various industrial facilities that make up the site. 16 June will mark the final mission of Ariane 5, after 27 years of service. After the visit, the 3rd foreign infantry regiment (REI) gave a presentation on operation TITAN and the external protection systems at the CSG in Kourou.

The regional session ended on Friday 9 June at the CCI after three intense weeks of training. The auditors presented the reports of the 5 committees to the authorities present, Major General Xavier BuissonCOMSUP FAG, Sub-prefect Jean-Michel DelvertDirector of IHEDN's Regional and Specialised Activities Department, and General Officer 2S Thierry Dapsenssession director.

At the end-of-session ceremony, and after the closing speech by the IHEDN representative, the 48 new auditors, joined by the 23 auditors from the young people's cycle in French Guiana, received the certificate that confers this quality and reinforces their desire to promote and disseminate the spirit of defence, in accordance with the Institute's mission.