Saudi-British Green Flag drills conclude in Taif

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A speech ceremony was held to mark the occasion, after which prizes and souvenirs were distributed to participants. (SPA)
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A speech ceremony was held to mark the occasion, after which prizes and souvenirs were distributed to participants. (SPA)
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Participants from both sides showed high levels of professionalism and readiness, and came out with positive results from applying tactics and tasks carried out by pilots during the aerial exercises. (SPA)
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Participants from both sides showed high levels of professionalism and readiness, and came out with positive results from applying tactics and tasks carried out by pilots during the aerial exercises. (SPA)
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A speech ceremony was held to mark the occasion, after which prizes and souvenirs were distributed to participants. (SPA)
Updated 07 December 2018

Saudi-British Green Flag drills conclude in Taif

  • The Green Flag drills for 2018 carried out between the Royal Saudi Air Force and the UK’s Royal Air Force
  • A speech ceremony was held to mark the occasion, after which prizes and souvenirs were distributed to participants

JEDDAH: The Green Flag drills for 2018 carried out between the Royal Saudi Air Force and the UK’s Royal Air Force ended on Thursday at the King Fahd Air Base in Taif.

A speech ceremony was held to mark the occasion, during which attendees heard a brief summary of what was carried out in the exercise, after which prizes and souvenirs were distributed to participants.

Major General Haidar bin Rafie Al-Omari, commander of the air base and the exercise, said the Green Flag 2018 exercises had been a success and that it had achieved its desired goals, by deepening the bonds of cooperation and exchange of experiences between the two air forces of both two countries and by raising the level of combat readiness.

Al-Omari also added that the participants from both sides showed high levels of professionalism and readiness, and came out with positive results from applying tactics and tasks carried out by pilots during the aerial exercises with proficiency in dealing with hypothetical situations applied, such as electronic warfare and neutralizing air targets and air control.

Colonel Khaled bin Yousuf Al-Yousuf praised the high level of participation in the Green Flag drill, stressing that the evaluation indicators were very positive. He added that the green flag drill and other exercises carried out by the Saudi Air Force showed a high level of mastery, whether on the logistical or technical levels.

He adding that the Saudi pilots are proving day after day that they are among the best. He said that all the armed forces and the Air Force in particular, are provided the needed support and care from the Saudi wise leadership, both in terms of qualification and training, or on the level of equipment and armament.


US denies banning dates from Saudi Arabia

Updated 7 min 3 sec ago

US denies banning dates from Saudi Arabia

  • There has been no FDA ban on dates from Saudi Arabia, the administration told Arab News

RIYADH: The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has denied that it banned the import of dates from Saudi Arabia, following media reports that it had done so earlier this week.

“There has been no FDA ban on dates from Saudi Arabia,” the administration told Arab News. The Saudi National Center for Palms & Dates (NCPD) also denied the reports.

The NCPD pointed out that reports published mentioned the finding of pesticide residues in date samples from a Saudi company dating back to 2009.

In a statement on Sunday, the NCPD said that the US FDA published on its website a list of all the companies “classified by country” which did not meet US standards.

It added that the FDA required companies to update their information with it as and when that changed.

Bashar Al-Quraya, deputy chairman of the Dates Committee of Al-Qassim Chamber of Commerce, told Arab News that the information did not come from reliable sources. “We did not see any real official statements,” he said.

The center stressed that they work with the relevant authorities to raise the level of date safety in general for products sold in local or export markets.

“Saudi Arabia is considered number one in date quality,” Al-Quraya said, adding that when they export dates to Germany and the UK, the entry procedures go very smoothly. “There are no problems and the procedures are very simple and clear.”

Al-Quraya also pointed out that for the last two months of growth before harvesting the crop, no pesticides are sprayed on Saudi dates, and the exported fruits are subjected to tests before shipping.

“The rumors did not affect the market. I am now at the food fair in Dubai, there is a great demand for Saudi dates from European countries,” he said.

“If there was a problem with our dates the news should come from the UK or Germany, as the number of dates we export (there) are much bigger than what we export to the US,” he added.