Friday, October 20, 2017

Monthly Archives: March 2015

0 305

President Barack Obama on Monday told Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi that he would lift a hold on US military aid to Cairo, but also said the United States would stop allowing Egypt to buy equipment on credit starting in fiscal year 2018.

Obama has been reviewing military aid to Egypt since 2013 when the Egyptian army ousted former president Mohamed Mursi. The decision will allow for the delivery of 12 F-16 aircraft, 20 Harpoon missiles, and up to 125 M1A1 Abrams tank kits that had been frozen, the White House said.

Obama said he would continue to ask the U.S. Congress for $1.3 billion in military aid for Egypt per year, but has decided to “modernize” the aid by discontinuing the use of cash flow financing for military equipment starting in fiscal 2018, the White House said.

The United States also will target its aid toward equipment used for counterterrorim, border security, maritime security and Sinai security, and for sustaining weapons systems already used by Egypt, the White House said.

“In this way, we will ensure that US funding is being used to promote shared objectives in the region, including a secure and stable Egypt and the defeat of terrorist organizations,” said Bernadette Meehan, spokeswoman for the White House National Security Council, in a statement.

Powered by WPeMatico

0 301

Saudi troops clashed with Yemeni Houthi fighters on Tuesday in the heaviest exchange of cross-border fire since the start of a Saudi-led air offensive last week, while Yemen’s foreign minister called for a rapid Arab intervention on the ground.

Saudi Arabia has been leading a coalition of Arab states since last Thursday in an air campaign against the Shi’ite Houthis, who emerged as the most powerful force in the Arabian Peninsula’s poorest country when they seized Yemen’s capital last year.

The Saudis say their aim is to restore President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who left the country last week. The Houthis are allied with Saudi Arabia’s regional foe Iran, and backed by army units loyal to longtime ruler Ali Abdullah Saleh, who was pushed out three years ago after “Arab Spring” demonstrations.

The conflict has brought civil war to a country already on the verge of chaos and forced Washington to evacuate its personnel from one of the main battlefields in the covert U.S. drone war against al Qaeda.

Residents and tribal sources in north Yemen reported artillery and rocket exchanges along several stretches of the Saudi border. Explosions and heavy gunfire were heard and Saudi helicopters flew overhead, they said.

In the southern port of Aden, Houthi fighters and allied army units pressed an offensive against forces loyal to Hadi, trying to capture the last remaining major stronghold of the absent president’s forces.

At least 36 people were killed when Houthi forces shelled Hadi loyalists in Aden. Jets from the Saudi-led coalition bombed Houthi positions near the airport.

Further west, Houthi fighters entered a coastal military base overlooking the Red Sea’s strategic Bab el-Mandeb strait, local officials said, when soldiers of the 17th Armoured Division opened the gates to the facility.

Powered by WPeMatico

0 278

أكد العميد أحمد عسيري، المتحدث باسم تحالف “عاصفة الحزم” الذي يستهدف الحوثيين في اليمن، الثلاثاء، أن التحالف يسيطر على الأجواء والموانئ اليمنية ويقطع كل طرق الإمداد عن الحوثيين، بما ينفي الأنباء التي ترددت عن وصول مساعدات عسكرية للحوثيين من إيران.

Powered by WPeMatico

0 265

NASA’s groundbreaking science mission to retrieve a sample from an ancient space rock has moved closer to fruition. The Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security Regolith Explorer (OSIRIS-REx) mission has passed a critical milestone in its path towards launch and is officially authorized to transition into its next phase.

Powered by WPeMatico