Kenya deploys the most expensive and highly trained commandos to save Cuba doctors

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The kidnapping of the two Cuban doctors- Assel Herera Correa and Landy Rodriguez based in Mandera, Kenya on April 12, 2019, was one among a long list of kidnapping operations carried out within Kenyan borders by AL-Qaeda affiliate group in Somalia.

Long Range Surveillance Unit during patrol

A combination of police officers and military men combing the vast Mandera area in search of Cuban doctors Assel Herera Correa and Landy Rodriguez, have found no trace of their whereabouts within Mandera County.

This is despite the deployment of some of the best-trained and equipped police and military teams who are kitting and training is among the most expensive in the world.

As the kidnapping touches on national security and threatens the working relationship between the governments of Kenya and Cuba, the military has taken an active role in the investigations.

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The military has deployed the fresh-trained commandos from the Long Range Surveillance (LRS) unit, to assist the police and other Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) soldiers drawn from the 1KR battalion in the search.

The Classic Long Range Surveillance unit employment will infiltrate deep behind enemy lines, into enemy territory, construct a hide site, and provide continuous surveillance/special reconnaissance of an intelligence target of key interest that being of the whereabouts of the Cuban doctors. Long Range Surveillance teams will conduct a 24-hour surveillance and analysis coverage unlike Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), manned aircraft, and most satellites usually providing.

The Kenya Defence Forces has one LRS unit based in Nairobi. This unit shares LRP missions with the Special Forces Group

Assuming they are not compromised, they will typically remain in position for up to days, as determined by the available food and water supplies. Long Range Surveillance units operate up to 62 miles (100 kilometers) from the Forward Line Of Troops (FLOT) for a maximum of 5 days regarding regular procedures.

Dr Assel Herera Correa,  Dr Landy Rodriguez

Military helicopters drawn from the Air Cavalry Battalion took over the search and rescue operations on air from the Kenya Police Airwing which flew the body of the slain officer to the Forces Memorial Hospital in Nairobi.

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