Turkish Forces Participate In Multinational Saudi Military Exercise

ttttTurkey has taken part in a large-scale military exercise conducted by Saudi Arabia on Monday. It was one of 20 countries participating in this ‘Thunder of the North’ exercise.

This exercise, according to AFP, began on Saturday. Its stated aim is to enhance air, ground and sea coordination against loosely defined terror threats.

Saudi Arabia has become more assertive when it comes to military action in the region: Saudi Arabia led a multinational coalition against the Houthi tribesmen in Yemen over the course of the last year and has, along with the Turks, armed opposition groups in Syria.

Turkey joining the Saudi military drill comes shortly after four Royal Saudi Air Force F-15 jet fighters arrived in Turkey’s southeastern Incirlik air base to participate in the United States-led anti-ISIS air campaign in Syria on Friday.

Both countries share many strategic and security interests in the region. Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu visited Riyadh in late January and was notably accompanied by Turkish Chief of Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar.
Riyadh recently announced the formation of a 34 country military alliance of Islamic countries to confront terrorist groups such as Islamic State (ISIS).