No foreign army bases in Egypt, army spokesman says

By REUTERS
October 12, 2012 09:59

 
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CAIRO - Egypt has no foreign military bases on its soil and has no plans to downsize its armed forces, said the military spokesman, rejecting media reports claiming so.

Military aid from the United States of $1.3 billion per year allows Egypt to reduce its defense procurement related costs, Colonel Ahmed Ali said in response to reports Egypt's army contracted with US-based security companies.

"There are no American or foreign military bases in Egypt," Ali told reporters on Thursday. "There never has been and there never will be any foreign military bases in Egypt. This is a fixed stance in Egyptian national security policy to preserve national sovereignty.

"Any decision to install military bases in Egypt would be a political decision taken over many stages including presenting the matter to the national defense council and parliament for consideration. But this issue is farfetched."

There are 1,600 Multinational Forces and Observer troops from the United States, Canada, Australia, France and other nations in the Sinai to monitor the 1979 Egypt-Israel peace treaty. The MFO facilities are sometimes mistaken for foreign bases.

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