Middle EastWorld

Report: Oman is becoming an important UK military hub

The British Army’s presence is growing in the Sultanate of Oman, which is increasingly serving as a strategically important global hub for them. The Ras Madrakah Joint Training Area, located near the Duqm Port, will be used more frequently by the Army, raised from around six weeks per annum to more than eight months in a year, according to a report yesterday by Army Technology.

The move, which is in line with the British government’s 2021 Integrated Review , intended to increase Britain’s overseas presence through military exercises and the deployment of defence assets.

On 1 November, Secretary of State for Defence, Ben Wallace, confirmed that the site would host two separate training blocks annually, each lasting up to four months.

It is thought that the increased deployments may support Project Khanjar, which is a joint effort between the British military and the Omani government to develop the Ras Madrakah site into a leading regional military training centre. According to the British Army website, Exercise Desert Khanjar 2022 is the country’s “first persistent engagement deployment since the publication of the British Army’s ‘Future Soldier’ strategy.” Through partnered exercises, it will aim to provide a “regionally forward-based persistent engagement force”.

Lieutenant General, Sir Ralph Wooddisse, Commander Field Army was quoted by Forces.Net as saying: “This is probably our strongest relationship in the region, if not the world, in many respects.”

“My father fought with the Omani Army in the 1960s and I’ve been coming backwards and forwards to Oman throughout my career and that is, I think, representative of the strength of the relationship between our two nations.”

READ: US urges Oman to open its airspace to Israel aircraft

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