From left- Leaders of Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the UAE attending the final stage of Joint Gulf Shield military exercise in Jubail city of Saudi Arabia on Monday- a screenshot from live streem. From left- Leaders of Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and the UAE attending the final stage of Joint Gulf Shield military exercise in Jubail city of Saudi Arabia on Monday- a screenshot from live streem.

Final stage of Saudi-led Joint Gulf Shield-1 drills kicks off

Mon, Apr. 16, 2018
CAIRO - 16 April 2018: Leaders of Arab countries headed to the eastern city of Jubail in Saudi Arabia to attend the final phase of the Joint Gulf Shield-1 military exercise on Monday.

The Armed Forces of 24 Arab and Islamic states participated in the second phase of the exercise, which was launched on April 2 in Saudi Arabia. The first phase was conducted late March.

The one-month exercise came under the auspices of Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz. It is considered the largest military exercise ever carried out in the region, and saw a large number of military personnel and modern military hardware.

This coordinated exercise aims to raise the readiness of Arab and Islamic military forces to ensure the security and stability of the region and the world, said spokesperson Abdullah bin Hussein al-Subaei in a press conference on Saturday.

The Egyptian Air Force participated in the drills, offering F-16 fighter jets, Sa‘ka Forces (Thunderbolt Forces,) paratroopers and naval forces. President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi has attended the exercises.

The exercise was conducted on the following day of the 29th Arab Summit, which held earlier Sunday in Dhahran city, eastern of Saudi Arabia, with participation of 16 Arab leaders.

Recent developments in the regional affairs dominated leaders' speeches during the opening session on Sunday. The escalation in Syria after the U.S.-led air strikes against military targets belonging to the Syrian regime topped summit's agenda.

UN General Assembly António Guterres, African union commission chairperson Moussa Faki, and High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs Federica Mogherini attended the summit.

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