23 coun­tries in ex­er­cise for se­cu­rity, sta­bil­ity and co­op­er­a­tion

Arab News - - SAUDI ARABIA -

A mas­sive mil­i­tary ex­er­cise to sup­port se­cu­rity, sta­bil­ity and co­op­er­a­tion in the re­gion be­gins on Sun­day when the Joint Gulf Shield-1 drill gets un­der­way af­ter lead­ers of the par­tic­i­pat­ing forces com­pleted the com­mand cen­ter ex­er­cises.

“The field ex­er­cise lasts for four con­sec­u­tive days,” said the spokesman for the Joint Gulf Shield 1, Brig. Gen. Al-Subaie, a live-fire ex­er­cise in­volv­ing par­tic­i­pat­ing coun­tries’ forces (ground, air, naval, air de­fense and spe­cial forces).

Al-Subaie said the ex­er­cise aims to raise the com­pe­ten­cies of the par­tic­i­pat­ing forces to face the chal­lenges and threats within a joint op­er­a­tion en­vi­ron­ment, in or­der to achieve the con­cept of joint ac­tion, where many mod­ern and so­phis­ti­cated weapons are used.

The Gulf Shield 1 drill, or­ga­nized by the Min­istry of De­fense in Saudi Ara­bia, is at­tended by 23 broth­erly coun­tries. Last week, one of the largest mil­i­tary ac­tion plans in the world con­cen­trated on field train­ing.

The Gulf Shield 1 drill is a turn­ing point in terms of the tech­niques used in ac­cor­dance with the most mod­ern mil­i­tary sys­tems in the world.

Tens of thou­sands of sol­diers have ar­rived in the King­dom to join the mil­i­tary ex­er­cise, which is con­sid­ered the largest in the re­gion in terms of the num­ber of par­tic­i­pat­ing coun­tries and the equip­ment used.

Var­i­ous ac­tiv­i­ties in­volv­ing joint op­er­a­tional plan­ning, train­ing, demon­stra­tions, sem­i­nars on pro­fes­sional top­ics, and cul­tural events will be con­ducted in the har­bor phase of the ex­er­cise, with the aim of mu­tu­ally ben­e­fit­ing the par­tic­i­pants and gen­er­at­ing good­will.

Ir­reg­u­lar war­fare, coastal de­fense, com­bat search and res­cue, naval war­fare ex­er­cises and ex­ten­sive fly­ing op­er­a­tions will also be con­ducted dur­ing the sea phase of the ex­er­cise.

Ob­servers from var­i­ous par­tic­i­pat­ing coun­tries will board Pak­istan Navy ships dur­ing the sea phase. War­ships from Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Jor­dan, Saudi Ara­bia, Su­dan, the UAE and US will also par­tic­i­pate.

Pak­istan is the lead­ing con­trib­u­tor to Joint Gulf Shield-1, both in terms of per­son­nel and as­sets, which is re­flec­tive of the strong bi­lat­eral de­fense re­la­tions be­tween Is­lam­abad and Riyadh.

Ac­cord­ing to strate­gic ex­perts, the month-long mil­i­tary drill in the East­ern Prov­ince of Saudi Ara­bia is im­por­tant for pre­par­ing to ad­dress any causes of in­sta­bil­ity and threats to the re­gion.

The ex­er­cise re­flects the con­vic­tion of th­ese coun­tries that joint co­op­er­a­tion on the ba­sis of in­te­grated mil­i­tary un­der­stand­ing and co­or­di­na­tion, both re­gion­ally and glob­ally, is the cor­ner­stone of con­fronting the threats and dan­gers that face the world.

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