Op­er­a­tion Saif Sa­reea 3 to bol­ster peace and de­vel­op­ment in Oman

Saif Sa­reea 3 was a joint op­er­a­tion in­volv­ing the armed forces of Oman and the UK

Times of Oman - - OMAN -

Times News Ser­vice

MUS­CAT: Joint mil­i­tary ex­er­cise Saif Sa­reea 3 is a pre­cur­sor to peace and de­vel­op­ment in the Sul­tanate, a top of­fi­cial at Oman’s Min­istry of De­fence has said.

Saif Sa­reea 3 (which is Ara­bic for Swift Sword 3), was a joint op­er­a­tion in­volv­ing the armed forces of Oman and the UK, one of the Sul­tanate’s long-serv­ing strate­gic part­ners.

“Since the very be­gin­ning of the Omani Re­nais­sance, the Sul­tan’s armed forces have car­ried out their du­ties and their sa­cred na­tional roles, which are to pro­tect the achieve­ments of the home­land,” said Bri­gadier Has­san Al Mu­jaini, the of­fi­cial spokesper­son for the ex­er­cise. “This brings de­vel­op­ment to its con­fi­dent path to­wards fur­ther de­vel­op­ment and mod­erni­sa­tion.” “They never for­get the im­por­tance of de­vel­op­ing their com­pe­tency gear and hu­man el­e­ments, through a series of lo­cal ex­er­cises with broth­erly and friendly coun­tries,” he added.

Saif Sa­reea 3 ran from Oc­to­ber 17, and saw the par­tic­i­pa­tion of more than 70,000 Omani de­fence per­son­nel, drawn from the var­i­ous branches of the Sul­tan’s Armed Forces, in­clud­ing the Royal Army of Oman, Royal Navy of Oman and Royal Air Force of Oman, as well as the Royal Guard of Oman and the Sul­tan’s Spe­cial Forces.

They trained along­side 5,500 per­son­nel from the Bri­tish Armed Forces, in­clud­ing the Bri­tish Army, the Royal Navy, the Royal Air Force, the Army Air Corps and the Royal Marine Com­man­dos, mak­ing this the big­gest train­ing ex­er­cise be­tween the two na­tions.

Par­al­lel and prior to this ran Al Shu­mookh 2, a solely Omani ex­er­cise, de­signed to im­prove the readi­ness and re­ac­tion time of the coun­try’s brave de­fend­ers.

The bri­gadier ex­plained that readi­ness and the com­mit­ment to pro­tect Oman’s peo­ple were part of the ex­is­tence of train­ing ex­er­cises such as Shu­mookh 2 and Saif Sa­reea 3. The armed forces have a duty to be pre­pared, par­tic­u­larly as the gov­ern­ment and coun­try de­velop.

Al Mu­jaini added, “The armed forces of the Sul­tan and the other se­cu­rity and mil­i­tary au­thor­i­ties, which are an in­te­gral part of the de­vel­op­ment tak­ing place all over Oman, have a role in cre­at­ing an ap­pro­pri­ate en­vi­ron­ment so that other gov­ern­ment agen­cies can per­form their du­ties within the frame­work of these de­vel­op­men­tal plans.”

“Sta­bil­ity fac­tors have been linked to the ex­is­tence of those who can en­sure their sus­tain­abil­ity, a noble role which has been as­signed to the mil­i­tary,” he said.

The fi­nal op­er­a­tions of Saif Sa­reea 3 and Al Shu­mookh 2 took place on Novem­ber 3, in a live fire­power drill that in­cluded el­e­ments of the armed forces from both Oman and the UK.

The event was over­seen by Sayyid Badr bin Saud bin Harib Al Bu­saidi, Min­is­ter Re­spon­si­ble for De­fence Af­fairs, as well as Gavin Wil­liamson, the Bri­tish De­fence Sec­re­tary. Also present were Lieu­tenant Gen­eral Ahmed Al Nab­hani, chief of Oman’s Army Staff, as well as a number of top Bri­tish of­fi­cers, in­clud­ing Air Vice Mar­shal Bruce Headley, Vice Ad­mi­ral Tim Fraser, Gen­eral Sir Christo­pher Deverell, Air Chief Mar­shal Sir Stephen John Hil­lier, Ma­jor Gen­eral Stu­art Skeates, Gen­eral Sir Ni­cholas Pa­trick Carter, Ad­mi­ral Sir Philip An­drew Jones, Gen­eral Mark Car­leton Smith and Lt Gen Sir Jo­han Lorimer.

Saif Sa­reea 1, the first joint mil­i­tary ex­er­cise in the series, took place in 1986, with Saif Sa­reea 2 tak­ing place in 2001. Also in­vited to the clos­ing fire­power dis­play were rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the high com­mands of the armed forces of other na­tions, in­clud­ing Oman’s GCC com­pa­tri­ots Saudi Ara­bia, Qatar, the UAE and Kuwait, as well as Egypt, Jor­dan and South Korea.

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