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Two SD National Guard Units Heading To Horn Of Africa

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – About 230 members of two South Dakota Army National Guard units have received mobilization orders for an 8-month deployment to the Horn of Africa.

More than 190 soldiers with the 196th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade and nearly 40 from the 115th Signal Company will deploy to the Republic of Djibouti to support U.S. Africa Command with regional security and stability goals.

The 196th will deploy in late August and will command and control units assigned to a designated region. The 115th will deploy in early September and provide operational support and management of communication and information systems.

Djibouti is a tiny seaside nation of less than a million people and 9-million acres of land. It’s surrounded by Eritrea to the north, Ethiopia to the south and west, and Somalia to the east.

It lies across from Yemen and the Arabian Peninsula at the point where the Red Sea empties into the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean, placing it strategically near some of the world’s busiest shipping lanes.