Saudi Arabia concluded Thursday North Thunder, a military exercise aimed at unifying the region’s military forces to promote peace and stability.
The exercise was one of the largest military exercises in the region, uniting 20 Arab and Islamic nations in a display of unity against terrorism and extremism.
“We are proud of our solidarity in North Thunder; showing the world our joint resolve in deterring evil and fighting extremism and terrorism,” tweeted King Salman bin Abdulaziz.
North Thunder provided the region’s top military forces a chance to coordinate at the highest levels against threats to peace and stability in the region. The military training included exercises on how to combat guerilla warfare.
Participating countries included Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, Bahrain, Turkey, Chad, Tunisia, Djibouti, Senegal, Sudan, Oman, Qatar, Comoros, Kuwait, Maldives, Malaysia, Egypt, Morocco and Mauritania in addition to Saudi Arabia and the joint Peninsula Shield Force.
Upon his arrival on Wednesday to Hafr Al-Batin to patronize the final maneuver of the North Thunder, King Salman listened to explanation on the general outline project of King Saud Airbase in the Eastern Sector. He also watched a documentary about the project’s designs and facilities.
Then, the King pressed the button and laid the foundation stone for the construction project of King Saud Airbase, and signed the commemorative plaque of the project, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.
King Saud Air Base constitutes a new fort for protection of the airspace of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, said the Commander of King Saud Air Base in the Eastern Sector Major General Ahmed bin Ali Al-Asiri.
Technical studies, designs and engineering survey works for the construction of the new base began immediately after the issuance of the royal approval to turn the advanced air base in Hafr Al-Batin to a major air force base under the name of King Saud Air Base in the Eastern Sector, Al-Asiri added.
He explained that the designs of the new air base took into account the highest quality and efficiency standards, energy conservation standards and the preservation of the existing facilities in line with the objectives and plans of the new air force base to be a combat air base.
Al-Asiri noted that King Saud Air Base will include several plane squadrons, as well as other support systems and with the ability to accommodate more air systems in the future. The air base will be able to work around the clock in case of war with the ability to carry out air operations with self stockpiles of fuel, weapons, ammunition and spare parts.
He said that the airbase will be built in three phases and is expected to be completed in four years, stressing that such construction works will not affect the current operation of the base.