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Eighty F-16s to enter service during 2004

posted on 05/11/2001: 1569 views

The 80 F-16s ordered by the UAE will be in service during 2004, confirmed Lieutenant General Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Chief of Staff of UAE Armed Forces. He did not comment on whether there will be more orders of the F-16s. Sheikh Mohammed also expressed belief that the current situation could increase armament and defence plans in the UAE. "GCC military cooperation is still proactive, but GCC countries have no intention to take part at the U.S.' Stars Wars project at present."

He asserted that the Dubai 2001 show proves that the situation is normal in the country. "Dubai 2001 grows constantly despite of the withdrawal of some companies this year. In fact, many other regional shows were entirely cancelled. "Through the air show, the UAE wants to tell others that life and movement is normal and is highly secure. "Life has changed in some countries but it did not in the UAE, which is always keen on making circumstances work in its favour." Sheikh Mohammed stressed that President His Highness Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, always calls for peace and stability and the welfare of Islamic countries - although circumstances are unlike that. "But there is high hope in reaching that goal."

The UAE Armed Forces strategy, said Sheikh Mohammed, focuses on military quality rather than quantity. When asked about Arab military cooperation, Sheikh Mohammed said: "It is definitely required but comes only through political decisions." On Palestine and the Middle East, he noted: "It is a major issue, but the Israelis are superior in technology in terms of comparison between Arab-Israeli military powers." (The Gulf News)


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