Kirby Haiti Q&A
Q: Hi. Thank you.
My question has to do with the assassination in Haiti and the DOD's statement that some of the suspected people involved had received training from the U.S. military. Has there been anything in addition that the Defense Department has learned about potentially how many people, what -- what kind of training, things like that? And also, are those -- is that discovery and what happened in Haiti prompting the DOD to perhaps reevaluate or reconsider how it trains foreign militaries, or how it vets those who participate?
MR. KIRBY: So I think what we can confirm is thus far, we've identified seven individuals who were former members of the Colombian military that had received some sort of training and education, U.S.-funded and provided education and training. Some of it was under State Department funding and authorities, and some of -- some of the training was under DOD, Department of Defense-funded training.
But to you give an example of some of them that we've identified -- and -- and this isn't by individual. I'm not going to get into speaking to individuals, but cadet leadership development, counter-drug operations, noncommissioned officer professional development, small-unit leadership training, human rights training, emergency medical training, some helicopter maintenance training and those kinds of things -- all things that are very common. We train thousands of individuals, particularly from militaries in the Western hemisphere over the -- over the course of a given year, all training that is basic military and leadership training, as I just cited. And those examples I gave are actual examples of training we know that these seven individuals got -- nothing, certainly, related at all -- or -- or that one could extrapolate, you know, as leading to or encouraging of what happened in -- in Haiti. And I know of no plans right now, as a result of what happened in Haiti, for us to reconsider or to change this very valuable, ethical leadership training that we continue to provide to -- to partners in the Western hemisphere and to partners around the world.
Q: Is it correct that some of them were -- were trained at Fort Polk, or were some people trained elsewhere, or --
MR. KIRBY: I don't have the details of exactly where all this training went. You're talking about seven individuals over the course of their time in the -- in the Colombian military, and I just, I don't have the details of every base at which every training seminar was held, and frankly, I'm not really sure the relevance of that level of detail anyway.
Q: But no changes in the works.
MR. KIRBY: Sylvie?