The Naval Forces of Egypt and Spain have performed a passing exercise in the Area of Responsibility of the Southern Fleet of the Red Sea. This was announced by the press service of the Egyptian Ministry of Defence on 22 October.
"The exercise comes within the framework of the Armed Forces General Command plan to upgrade the level of training and exchange experiences with the armed forces of brotherly and friendly countries," said the statement of the Egyptian Ministry of Defence.
Fro the Egyptian side, Al-Nasser, and Abou Qir frigates participated in the exercise. From the Spanish side, there was the SANTA MARIA frigate.
The exercise included various training activities of a professional nature, including air defense exercises and defense exercises against various surface threats, added the Ministry in its statement.
This is exercise is the second of its kind carried out by the Spanish and Egyptian navy in October. The previous exercise was on 10 October in the Area of Responsibility of the Northern Fleet in the Mediterranean.
The Egyptian side stated that these exercises contribute to the exchange of common experiences with the Spanish side, to benefit from bilateral capabilities in achieving the common interests of both sides, and to enhance military cooperation between the Egyptian and Spanish naval forces.
The Egyptian Navy is a significant regional power in the Middle East and North Africa. It is mainly responsible for the protection of more than 2,000 kilometers of coastline of the Mediterranean and the Red Sea, defense of approaches to the Suez Canal, and support for army operations.
With the arrival of President Al-Sisi to office, he started a modernization plan of the Egyptian Armed Forces including the navy. This plan of modernizing the navy has so far included the development of infrastructure of the naval units as developing of the main maritime bases to contain a large number of Naval vessels and troops, dividing the navy forces into two combat fleets one in the Mediterranean and the other in the Red sea to make the navy work independently in the strategic directions and also to divide the modernization plan among the two fleets, as well as the acquisition of equipment and naval vessels.