Gen. John Kelly, outgoing chief of the U.S. Southern Command, has said the command collaborates with its military allies to counter terrorism, illegal drug trade and transnational organized crime, DoD News reported Friday.
Lisa Ferdinando writes the Defense Department established Southcom to carry out DoD’s security cooperation initiatives in southern and central America and the Caribbean.
“It’s all about broadening and deepening partnerships down there,” Kelly told reporters at a news conference held Friday at the Pentagon.
He noted the command has interdicted nearly 200 metric tons of cocaine over the past year through partnership with several U.S. partner nations as well as works to ensure humane treatment of prisoners at a Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention facility, Kelly added to reporters.
Kelly is retiring after a more than 40-year military career and will be succeeded by Navy Vice Adm. Kurt Tidd as head of Southcom effective Thursday.