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Egypt's Sisi attends Saudi Arabia's 'Thunder of the North' military exercise finale

A total of twenty countries participated in the military exercise that began last month in northern Saudi Arabia

Ahram Online , Thursday 10 Mar 2016
Egypt
Egypt's Sisi attends Saudi Arabia's 'Thunder of the North' military exercise finale (Photo: Courtesy of the Egyptian presidency)
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Egypt's President Abdel-Fattah El-Sisi attended on Thursday the finale of the joint military exercise "Thunder of the North" along with Saudi Arabia's King Salman Bin Abdel Aziz and other Arab and regional leaders. 
 
Twenty countries including Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Turkey, Sudan, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Jordan participated in the exercise that started last month in the area of Hafr Al Batan, northern Saudi Arabia.
 
Other leaders who attended the finale were Qatari Emir Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Kuwaiti Emir Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah, Sudanese President Omar Al Bashir and Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
 
The exercise was conducted by 300,000 soldiers, 20,000 tanks, 2540 jets, 460 helicopters and hundreds of warships.
 
In December 2015, Saudi Arabia established an "anti-terrorism" Islamic coalition consisting of 34 Arab, African and Asian countries including Egypt, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Malaysia, and Pakistan. 
 
The Islamic coalition does not include Iran, Saudi Arabia's archrival for influence in the Arab world, as proxy conflicts between the two regional powers rage from Syria to Yemen.
 
According to Saudi Arabia's deputy Crown Prince and Defence Minister Mohamed bin Salman, the coalition will fight the IS group as well as "any terrorist organisation that appears in front of us."
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