Israel holds large air force drill with 8 other countries

In this Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017 photo, two German Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets fly over Ovda airbase near Eilat, southern Israel during the 2017 Blue Flag exercise. (AP Photo/Ariel Schalit)
Updated 09 November 2017
0

Israel holds large air force drill with 8 other countries

JERUSALEM: Israel’s military said on Thursday that it was holding its largest-ever air drill, with pilots from eight countries and dozens of aircraft simulating combat scenarios and facing off in training exercises.
Some 1,000 participants from the United States, Germany and France, among others, were in Israel for the drill codenamed “Blue Flag,” the third of its kind. Germany, India and France were taking part for the first time.
Fighter jets, helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles from participating countries were involved in the simulations, which range from air battles to dealing with anti-aircraft systems.
The military said the two-week drill, which takes place every two years, comes amid volatility in the region.
“Against that background, a drill this broad with countries that come here is very significant,” said the official who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with military regulations.
The official said the drill allows for the participating countries to learn from each other and to learn to work together should the need arise in the future.
The drill comes as Israel faces challenges from neighboring Syria where the Iran-backed Shiite Lebanese militant group Hezbollah is fighting alongside government forces. Israel fears its archenemy Iran will establish a Shiite “corridor” on its doorstep, with land links from Iran to Lebanon, allowing for the movement of militants and weapons across the region.


Libya loses 400,000 barrels of storage capacity due to militant attacks

Updated 1 min 55 sec ago
0

Libya loses 400,000 barrels of storage capacity due to militant attacks

LONDON: Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) said that at least 400,000 barrels of storage capacity has been lost within the past few days due to militant attacks on Ras Lanuf and Al-Sidra.
The NOC announced Monday that it has suffered “catastrophic losses” when two storage tanks were destroyed during fierce clashes in its oil crescent, northeast of the country.
Armed groups on Thursday attacked the Ras Lanuf and Al-Sidra terminals held by Haftar’s forces around 650 kilometers (400 miles) east of Tripoli.
Haftar led a “major offensive” on Sunday following the attacks to drive rival groups from the country’s northeastern oil crescent.
NOC chief Mustafa Sonallah warned in statements carried by Reuters that if oil exports from these terminals remain at a standstill it could cause a “national disaster.”
The oil firm warned on Friday that output could fall by up to 400,000 barrels per day if the export shutdown continues.