20 nations, including Pakistan join major military manoeuvre in Saudi

Published: February 14, 2016
A file photo of Saudi military exercise. PHOTO COURTESY: WORLD TRIBUNE

A file photo of Saudi military exercise. PHOTO COURTESY: WORLD TRIBUNE

RIYADH: Armed forces from around 20 countries were gathering in northern Saudi Arabia Sunday for “the most important” military manoeuvre ever staged in the region, the official news agency SPA reported.

The “Thunder of the North” exercise involving ground, air, and naval forces sends a “clear message” that Riyadh and its allies “stand united in confronting all challenges and preserving peace and stability in the region”, SPA said.

Saudi Arabia is currently leading a military campaign against Iran-backed rebels in its southern neighbour Yemen. Last December, it also formed a new 35-member coalition to fight “terrorism” in Islamic countries.

Saudi deploys jets in Turkey for anti-Islamic State fight

Sunday’s announcement also comes as the kingdom, a member of the US-led coalition targeting the Islamic State group, said it has deployed warplanes to a Turkish air base in order to “intensify” its operations against IS in Syria.

SPA did not specify when the military exercise will begin or how long it will last.

However, the agency called it the “most important and largest in the region’s history” in terms of the number of nations taking part and the weaponry being used.

Twenty countries will be taking take part, SPA said.

Among them are Saudi Arabia’s five partners in the Gulf Cooperation Council, as well as Chad, Egypt, Jordan, Malaysia, Morocco, Pakistan, Senegal and Tunisia, it added.

A Saudi source said on Thursday that members of the new “anti-terrorism” coalition will gather in Saudi Arabia next month for its first publicly announced meeting.

Riyadh has said the alliance would share intelligence, combat violent ideology and deploy troops if necessary.

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Reader Comments (15)

  • Feb 15, 2016 - 12:40AM

    I am glad to hear that, Pakistan is part of this coalition. Recommend

  • Saad Nazim
    Feb 15, 2016 - 5:04AM

    Let’s see if these nations turn up when we are at loggerheads with India!Recommend

  • TooTrue
    Feb 15, 2016 - 5:56AM

    Is the irony of KSA naming a military exercise: Thunder of the North lost on Pakistan, when we give our operations bizarre Arabic names?Recommend

  • TooTrue
    Feb 15, 2016 - 6:27AM

    And only one military with any teeth or backbone.Recommend

  • Observer
    Feb 15, 2016 - 8:59AM

    It is a message they are sending to Iraqi government. A sectarian message, obvious by mere participants. Saudi is turning out to be the seed of evil and vice. Instead of focusing on faith,discipline and unity, they are spreading hatred through polarization, exactly what enemy is looking for.Recommend

  • Human
    Feb 15, 2016 - 9:56AM

    With the exception of last few military operations most had English ‘code-names’Recommend

  • zoro
    Feb 15, 2016 - 10:50AM

    @Saad Nazim:
    Experience shows … no one will back pakistan when they are loggerheads with India…
    Consequences will be disastrous… Recommend

  • asim
    Feb 15, 2016 - 12:27PM

    Pakistan should stay away from the Syrian war, even if it pays lip service to Riyadh.Recommend

  • sattar rind
    Feb 15, 2016 - 4:56PM

    Pakistan must avoid to be part of this dirty game … these forces are not going to win in any case from the Russia however ultimately we would pay the prices. Recommend

  • Ahmed
    Feb 15, 2016 - 6:44PM

    may be bizzare for you not for the rest of us Recommend

  • Ibrahim
    Feb 15, 2016 - 6:47PM

    Great initiative keep it upRecommend

  • syed & syed
    Feb 16, 2016 - 3:40AM

    World knows the military capabilities of Saudi Arabia. They are bombarding Yemen on hourly basis and completely cordoned this country for the last one year but no result. What Saudis will gain, their strength is seen in Yemen.. As a matter of fact the young princes are trying to fool old Salman who at present is sitting on throneRecommend

  • Haji Atiya
    Feb 16, 2016 - 5:03AM

    @Saad Nazim:
    The only backing we need is tactical nukes; do the other small fries have anything to offer ?Recommend

  • Mar 7, 2016 - 4:33AM

    Masha’ALLAH i want join Saudi Army…..and its my desire….now i am in Saudi works in a shop…..please informe me……Recommend

  • Mar 7, 2016 - 4:38AM

    Masha’ALLAH I am Pakistani and want join Saudi Army….now i am in Saudi Arabia works in a shop…..please inform me its my desire that i join Saudi Army…..Recommend

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