Yemeni chief of staff says army has received international offers of logistical support

Countries in the European Union, Eastern Europe and South-East Asia have “expressed a wish to provide logistical support to Yemen's army." (Reuters)
Updated 29 December 2017

Yemeni chief of staff says army has received international offers of logistical support

Yemen’s chief of staff, Major General Taher Al-Aqeeli, revealed that the Yemeni army has received European and Asian offers of logistical support, noting that new agreements would be signed at a later stage in the interest of the army.
In an interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, Al-Aqeeli said that countries in the European Union, Eastern Europe and South-East Asia have “expressed a wish to provide logistical support to the army, and that there is cooperation with Australia on the maritime side.”
“All the efforts and actions that are currently being implemented are moving toward strengthening of the army to enable it to defend the country, in line with a clear and comprehensive vision … to become a shield for the homeland and the Arab and Islamic nation,” the Yemeni military official said.
“We will work hard to dissolve the tribal authority over the army through the proper establishment of the military institution,” he added.
Al-Aqeeli underlined the role assumed by the Arab coalition in restructuring Yemen’s military institution.
“The Arab coalition forces play an important and pivotal role in all directions, whether with regards to material assistance or advice provided by the coalition leaders to the Yemeni army. We must realize that our brothers in Saudi Arabia and the UAE have not only provided such assistance, but also stood with Yemen to defend the rights of the Yemeni people,” he stated.
Al-Aqeeli went on to say that the Saudi-led coalition has provided “all possible resources, and harnessed all the tools to serve and develop the army, and the results of this support can be seen on the ground.”
On the liberation of the remaining Yemeni territories, the chief of staff noted that the army was moving with accuracy “to reduce the war bill and to save civilian lives on all fronts.”
“Everyone must know that it is difficult to reveal everything, and the army depends on what it does, not what it says … the army will open new fronts, using conventional and traditional tactics in such confrontations, and carry out direct offensive actions,” he said.
Asked about the mechanism to liberate Al-Hodeida port, Al-Aqeeli stressed that plans to regain control over the area were linked to internal and international decisions.
“There will be a joint local, regional and international decision on Hodeida. There will be a move toward the city in time to create a balance on the importance of moving toward Sanaa or Hodeida,” he explained.
Commenting on calls by international organizations to return to dialogue in the wake of the Army’s advancement on the ground, Al-Aqeeli said: “The Iranian project dominates a number of Arab countries … they have exploited the sincerity of international organizations and influenced the public opinion by using these organizations to change the course of events.”
“But international organizations have uncovered the Iranian lies,” he added.
On the recent developments following the assassination of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh, the Yemeni chief of staff stressed that the army would carry major operations in coordination with the Arab coalition forces.
“There will be military surprises that will not be disclosed now,” he said. “The army will certainly work in coordination with the Arab coalition forces to take advantage of all the events taking place on the ground in Sanaa.”
He noted that the Yemeni Army has succeeded in attracting leaders and sheikhs from Sanaa to its ranks.
“The army embraces all the Yemeni people from all factions, including scholars, tribes, officials, and therefore it was natural for them to join the army to liberate the remaining cities. We count on them to achieve outstanding results,” he said.

Cairo turns to Tokyo for a lesson on education

Updated 22 August 2019

Cairo turns to Tokyo for a lesson on education

  • The Japanese education system is recognized as one of the top five worldwide

CAIRO: Egypt is seeking Japan’s help to improve its education system, which has fallen to 130th place in international rankings.

The Japanese education system is recognized as one of the top five worldwide, and Cairo is hoping to apply key aspects of Japan’s approach to the Egyptian curriculum.

Education has played a major role in transforming Japan from a feudal state receiving aid following World War II to a modern economic powerhouse. 

During a visit to Japan in 2016, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi discussed political and economic development with Japanese officials, and was also briefed on the Japanese education system.

The Egyptian leader visited Japanese schools and called on Japan to help Egypt introduce a similar system in its schools.  

As part of Egyptian-Japanese cooperation, Japan’s embassy established cultural cooperation as well as technical and professional education links between the two countries. Collaboration has been strengthened from kindergarten to post-university, with Japanese experts contributing in various education fields.

Japanese experts have held seminars in schools across the country, focusing on basic education. 

During one seminar, Japan highlighted the importance of enhancing education by playing games during kindergarten and primary school, encouraging children’s ability and desire to explore.  

Education expert Ola El-Hazeq told Arab News that the Japanese system focuses on developing students’ sense of collective worth and responsibility toward society. This starts with their surrounding environment by taking care of school buildings, educational equipment and school furniture, for example.

“Japanese schools are known for being clean,” El-Hazeq said. “The first thing that surprises a school visitor is finding sneakers placed neatly in a locker or on wooden shelves at the school entrance. Each sneaker has its owner’s name on it. This is a habit picked up at most primary and intermediate schools as well as in many high schools.”

Japanese students also clean their classrooms, collect leaves that have fallen in the playground and take out the garbage. In many cases, teachers join students to clean up schools and also public gardens and beaches during the summer holidays.

El-Hazeq added that neither the teachers nor the students find it beneath their dignity to carry out such chores.

The academic year in Japan continues for almost 11 months, different from most other countries, with the Japanese academic year starting on April 1 and ending on March 31 the following year.

Japan’s school days and hours are relatively longer in comparison with other countries. Usually the school day is from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Teachers normally work until 5 p.m. but sometimes up to 7 p.m. Holidays are shorter than in other countries. Spring and winter holidays are no longer than 10 days, and the summer holiday ranges from 40 to 45 days.