Cyprus invites Israel to maneuver on evacuation

Unclear whether Israel will take part in the exercise to evacuation of noncombatants from conflict areas.

August 9, 2012 03:05
F-35 fighter jet

F-35 fighter jet 370. (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

Cyprus invited Israel to take part in a multi-national military maneuver in October focusing on the evacuation of noncombatants from conflict areas in the Middle East.

It was not immediately clear, however, whether Israel would take part in the exercise named Argonaftis, which one Western official said would include air, sea and land forces.

A similar maneuver held four years ago that included France, Cyprus and Greece incurred Turkish anger.

Cyprus is among the countries carefully watching the situation in Syria, worried – along with Syria’s other neighbors – that if the situation continues to deteriorate, they could be flooded with refugees escaping the country by boat.

Likewise, Cyprus has developed contingency plans for evacuating foreign nationals from Syria through Cyprus, plans likely to be tested during the Argonaftis drill.

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