Egypt renews deployment in Red Sea, Gulf

2016-01-14 22:58
 Egyptian naval vessel on the maritime border between Egypt and the Palestinian Gaza Strip, off the coast of Rafah in southern Gaza. (Said Khatib, AFP)

Egyptian naval vessel on the maritime border between Egypt and the Palestinian Gaza Strip, off the coast of Rafah in southern Gaza. (Said Khatib, AFP)

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Cairo - Egypt on Thursday renewed for another year its "combat" military deployment in the Red Sea and Persian Gulf regions, according to an official statement.

As in the past, the statement did not specify the number of troops or military assets Egypt is deploying in the two strategic regions. The decision was made by the National Defence Council, a body chaired by President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi that includes top government and military leaders.

Egypt is known to have deployed warships in the Red Sea near its southern entrance, Bab al-Mandab, as part of a Saudi-led alliance fighting Iranian-backed Shiite rebels and supporters of a former president in Yemen. The alliance began a campaign of airstrikes in Yemen in March last year.

Troops from several members of the alliance are fighting the rebels, known as Houthis, and their allies on the ground in parts of Yemen alongside forces loyal to the internationally recognized government and its allies.

El-Sissi has since removing Islamist President Mohammed Morsi in 2013 forged close ties with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait - three oil-rich Gulf Arab nations that poured billions of dollars into Egypt's offers, keeping the country's ailing economy afloat.

Read more on:    egypt  |  north africa

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