DAKAR, Senegal (AP) -- The U.S. military is launching its annual training exercise with armies from across Africa this week in Chad.
The training comes as Chad and its neighbors battle a growing threat from the Nigerian Islamic extremist group Boko Haram.
Some 1,300 participants from 28 countries are joining in the Flintlock exercise that lasts until March 9. It includes counter-terrorism forces not only from the U.S. but from other Western countries and a number of African militaries.
The annual exercise first began in 2006 in part to counter the rise of al-Qaida-linked militants in the Sahel region.
Now the most imminent danger to regional security is Boko Haram, which killed at least 10,000 people in Nigeria last year and is now staging cross-border attacks in Cameroon, Niger and Chad.