Security |

US, Jordan prepare for 'Eager Lion 2019' drill

By Noor al-Saleh in Amman

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US soldiers participate in the annual military exercises known as 'Eager Lion', near Maan, south of the Jordanian capital Amman on May 17th, 2017. Around 7,500 security personnel from the US, Jordan and 26 other nations are planning to take part in 'Eager Lion 2019', which is slated to begin August 25th. [Khalil Mazraawi/AFP]

The US and Jordan are preparing to launch a major multilateral training exercise, to be hosted by the kingdom, to improve the ability of the participating forces to work together to respond to common security threats.

Around 7,500 security personnel from the US, Jordan and 26 other nations are planning to take part in 'Eager Lion 2019', which is slated to begin August 25th and continue until September 5th.

The multilateral exercise, which has been held annually since 2011, enables participating forces to exchange military expertise, promotes regional security and improves interoperability among partner nations.

The drill offers participating nations "the opportunity to improve their collective ability to plan and operate in a coalition-type environment", according to a statement by the US Central Command Public Affairs office.

Participating forces will train for scenarios such as "long-range bomber missions, maritime security operations and cyber threats", it said.

Military-to-military engagement can involve training, seminars for senior leadership, public visits or private phone calls, all of which can increase understanding and co-operation among partner nations, the statement said.

Exercises in particular "demonstrate the value of operating in unfamiliar environments, maximizing our collective strengths and building trust", it added.

'Relationships matter'

Eager Lion 2019 aims to "address common threats to regional security at the operational level and facilitates multilateral training in a relatively low-threat but demanding environment", the statement said.

This year’s exercise sustains the momentum of previous drills, it said, and will build on training events that have been conducted before, such as the Global Strike Mission and Senior Leader Seminar.

"We also have developed new ideas and scenarios to improve participating nations’ ability to outsmart and outmaneuver our near-peer adversaries," the CENTCOM statement said, referring to nations with similar technology and capabilities.

Eager Lion 2019 training also will focus on countering unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and cyber operations.

Participating nations will deliver a clear, unified message that relationships matter, the statement said, noting that participating forces must remain committed to increasing understanding and maintaining ready and responsive forces.

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