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Thu 23 May 2019 12:12 PM

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UAE, Jordan agree to conduct joint military exercises

The move by the two Arab countries is to "ensure security and stability in the region"

UAE, Jordan agree to conduct joint military exercises
Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces met with King Abdullah II of Jordan yesterday at Al Bateen Palace in Abu Dhabi.

Jordan and the United Arab Emirates have agreed to coordinate together to carry out a number of joint military exercises, as the two countries move to take a stance against the “various challenges besetting the region”.

The announcement by the WAM state news agency came as Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces met with King Abdullah II of Jordan yesterday at Al Bateen Palace in Abu Dhabi.

“The UAE is closely co-ordinating with Jordan on the current regional developments to protect the supreme interests of Arab countries and ensure security and stability in the region, including safeguarding the freedom of navigation,” the WAM report said.

“The two leaders directed the foreign ministers of the two countries as well as their chiefs-of-staff to ensure coordination of stances towards the various challenges besetting the region. Accordingly, it has been decided the two countries will conduct joint military exercises in the foreseeable future,” the statement added.

The announcements comes amidst heightened tensions between Iran and the U.S. Earlier this month, four ships, including two Saudi oil tankers, were damaged in attacks off the coast of the United Arab Emirates. This led the Lloyd's of London insurance firm on Friday to widen its list of areas in and around the Gulf posing "enhanced risk for marine insurers".

The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) last week issued a warning that “heightened military activities” pose an “inadvertent risk” to commercial aircraft flying over the region.

Countries across the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) area “commenced enhanced security patrols” in international waters around the region from Saturday, according to a statement by the US Navy.

“Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) nations commenced enhanced security patrols across the region in international waters May 18, specifically increasing communication and coordination with each other in support of regional naval cooperation and maritime security operations in the Arabian Gulf,” the Bahrain-based U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet said in a post on its official Facebook page.

“As agreed to last week in a meeting at U.S. 5th Fleet headquarters in Manama, Bahrain, ships of the GCC - both navies and coast guards - are working in tight coordination with each other and the United States Navy,” the statement added.

In an earlier statement on Sunday, the U.S. Navy said it had carried out a military exercise in the Arabian Gulf at the weekend involving the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier.

“The operations highlight the ability of the U.S. Navy to quickly mobilize assets and aggregate different platforms with a variety of operational capabilities,” the US Fifth Fleet said.