By Krista Cummins, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Pacific Public Affairs
JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM (NNS) -- Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Pacific Theater Engagement Engineering celebrated the completion of a seven-story Vietnamese Peacekeeping Training Facility with a dedication ceremony held Aug. 28 in Hanoi, Vietnam.
The ceremony was hosted by the Vietnamese Peacekeeping Center (VNPKC), which featured the following keynote speakers: U.S. Ambassador to Vietnam Ted Osius and Vice Minister of Defense for the Socialist Republic of Vietnam Senior Lt. Gen. Nguyen Chi Vinh. NAVFAC Pacific Resident Officer in Charge of Construction (ROICC) Thailand Lt. Cmdr. Gareth Montgomery represented U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) and the Global Peace Operations Initiative (GPOI) by also serving as one of the guest speakers.
"The event highlighted the continued strategic support from the U.S. government to increase Vietnam's capabilities to participate and lead United Nations (UN) peacekeeping efforts around the globe," said Montgomery.
The $2.7 million facility is fully-furnished and includes twelve 32-student classrooms; three 72-student classrooms; a 254-seat auditorium with an interpreter room; offices for 15 instructors and 23 permanent staff; guest reception room; kitchenette; and basement parking for nine vehicles and 40 motorbikes.
"With the completed training facility, the VNPKC can currently train troops in one place," said NAVFAC Pacific ROICC Thailand Project Engineer Thanh Nguyen. "This building was well designed by incorporating not only current requirements to increase the capacity of the VNPKC, but also future development requirements were taken into account."
The VNPKC, formed in 2014 under the Vietnam National Defense Ministry, will utilize the facility to conduct training and enhance capability of the Vietnamese peacekeepers in support of UN peacekeeping missions. Since 2014, Vietnam has sent peacekeepers to South Sudan and the Central African Republic.
The ribbon-cutting event marked the official completion of a long-standing project that began in 2016, funded by U.S.PACOM through the GPOI and administered by NAVFAC.