Military of Equatorial Guinea

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The military of Equatorial Guinea was reorganized in 1979. It consists of approximately 2,500 service members. The army has almost 1,400 soldiers, the police 400 paramilitary men, the navy 200 service members, and the air force about 120 members. There is also a Gendarmerie, but the number of members is unknown. The Gendarmerie is a new branch of the service in which training and education is being supported by the French Military Cooperation in Equatorial Guinea. Overall the military is poorly trained and equipped. It has mostly small arms, RPGs, and mortars. Almost none of its Soviet-style light-armored vehicles or trucks are operational.

In 1988, the United States donated a 68-foot patrol boat to the Equatoguinean navy to patrol its exclusive economic zone. The U.S. patrol boat "Isla de Bioko" is no longer operational. U.S. military-to-military engagement has been dormant since 1997 (the year of the last Joint Combined Exchange Training Exercise). Between 1984 and 1992, service members went regularly to the United States on the International Military Education Training program, after which funding for this program for Equatorial Guinea ceased. The government spent 6.5% of its annual budget on defense in 2000 and 4.5% of its budget on defense in 2001. It recently acquired some Chinese artillery pieces, some Ukrainian patrol boats, and some Ukrainian Helicopter Gunships. The number of paved airports in Equatorial Guinea can be counted on one hand, and as such the number of aeroplanes operated by the airforce is small [1] [2]. The Equatoguineans rely on foreigners to operate and maintain this equipment as they are not sufficiently trained to do so.

Military appointments are all reviewed by President Obiang, and few of the native militiamen come from outside of Obiang's Mongomo based Esangui clan. Obiang was a general when he overthrew his uncle, Francisco Macías Nguema.

Military branches
Army, Navy, Air Force, Rapid Intervention Force, National Police
Military manpower - availability
Males age 15-49: 105,420 (2000 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service
Males age 15-49: 53,564 (2000 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure
$3 million (FY97/98)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP
0.6% (FY97/98)

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