Qatari Military Participated in Drills in Saudi Arabia

Modesto Morganelli
Aprile 20, 2018

Qatari forces' participation in joint military exercises that ended in Saudi Arabia this week is seen as an apparent sign of some compromise among the Arab states locked in a almost year-long dispute, Reuters said.

The war maneuvers involved land, sea and air forces from 25 countries and obviated a boycott that the Saudi kingdom and three other Arab states have carried out against Doha since last June.

The military drill was conducted in the town of Ras Al Khair, north of Jubail city in the eastern region of the kingdom, from March 21 to April 16, QNA quoted the defence ministry as saying.

According to the Saudi Press Agency, the Gulf Shield exercise is the largest of its kind in the region both in terms of troop numbers and participating countries.

Al-Ghanem is the highest-ranking Qatari military official to visit the Saudi kingdom since June of a year ago, when Riyadh - along with Cairo, Abu Dhabi and Manama - cut its relations with Doha, accusing it of supporting terrorist groups.

According to QNA, the closing ceremony was attended by the Qatar Armed Forces' Chief of Staff, Major General Ghanem bin Shaheen al-Ghanem, at the invitation of his Saudi counterpart Lt General Fayyad bin Hamed al-Ruwayli.

The quartet receives from Doha the closure of the channel Al Jazeera, the closure of a Turkish military base and the withdrawal of support to terrorist groups, among other requests.

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