- Middle East/North Africa
Armed Forces Spokesperson Ahmed Mohamed Ali denied a report published in Jordanian Al-Ghad newspaper claiming that the joint Egypt-US military exercise "Bright Star" will be carried out in Jordan instead of Egypt because of ongoing political unrest.
He added that the operation will be carried out at its scheduled date in coordination with the US.
In statements to Al-Masry Al-Youm, he added that the Armed Forces carries out several maneuvers with Egyptian allies in order to keep officer preparedness up and in line with developments in weapons technology.
Ali also said that political conditions in Egypt following the 25 January revolution had postponed the exercise in 2011, but added that there is no intention to delay it or conduct it outside of Egypt this year.
The Jordanian paper had claimed in its Sunday issue that the maneuver was going to be carried out in Jordan this summer instead of in Egypt, due to the latter's political turmoil. The paper added that the decision was made after Jordan successfully hosted "Eager Lion," the largest ever Jordanian-American military exercise in which 19 countries participated, including nine Arab countries.
The Bright Star is the largest multi-national military maneuver in the world and is carried out biannually. It started off in 1980 with only Egypt and the US following the signing of the Camp David Accords in 1979. Other countries then joined the maneuver, including three Arab countries and NATO members. Thirty three countries, including China, India, France, Britain, Greece, Turkey, Germany, Italy, Kuwait, Jordan and Syria, were also eventually invited to send observers.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm