Egypt hosts Arab nations for military exercises, Trump pushes 'Arab NATO'

The exercises are called "The Shield of the Arabs 1," and are due to be held from Nov. 3-16

By REUTERS
October 31, 2018 20:16
1 minute read.
Egypt hosts Arab nations for military exercises, Trump pushes 'Arab NATO'

Military forces are seen in North Sinai, Egypt, December 1, 2017. Picture taken December 1, 2017.. (photo credit: MOHAMED ABD EL GHANY/ REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analysis from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later

CAIRO —  Armed forces and observers from eight Arab countries are converging on Egypt for exercises starting on Saturday, the Egyptian military said on Wednesday, in a move that could evolve into a regional pact to counter Iran's influence.

President Donald Trump's administration has been quietly pushing for Gulf Arab countries, together with Egypt and Jordan, to start putting together what some White House officials have called an "Arab NATO" of Sunni Muslim allies to stand against Shi'ite power Iran.

A Saudi-led coalition of Arab states is already intervening in Yemen's war, staging air strikes against Iran-aligned Houthi forces which control much of the country's north, including the capital Sanaa.

In a statement on his Facebook page, the Egyptian military spokesman said that air, ground, naval and special forces from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and Jordan have begun arriving in Egypt for the exercises called "The Shield of the Arabs 1," due to be held from Nov. 3-16.

Observers from Lebanon and Morocco will also attend the maneuvers, the spokesman, Colonel Tamer al-Refai said.

Refai said the exercises were part of Egypt's efforts to enhance military cooperation with other Arab countries but declined to speculate on whether they could evolve into some sort of a military alliance.

Qatar, which is involved in a row with Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt, and Oman are not participating in the exercises.

The White House confirmed in July it had been working on the concept of an alliance with its regional partners for several months.

A U.S. source said that Saudi officials had raised the idea of a security pact before Trump visited the kingdom last year when he announced a massive arms deal, but the alliance proposal did not get off the ground.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called on Tuesday for a cessation of hostilities in Yemen and said U.N.-led negotiations to end the civil war should begin next month.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

July 17, 2019
Iranian official in Syria: Israel does not have a future in the region

By ROSSELLA TERCATIN

Cookie Settings