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Saudi Arabia conducting 'region's largest' military drill with 20 nations

By Andrew V. Pestano Follow @AVPLive9 Contact the Author   |   Feb. 15, 2016 at 2:02 PM

RIYADH, Saudi Arabia, Feb. 15 (UPI) -- Saudi Arabia began a massive military exercise, called North Thunder, involving Arab and Muslim countries on Monday.

Taking place in Saudi Arabia's King Khalid Military City, the exercise will include air, sea and land forces in what the Saudi Press Agency calls "the largest in the region's history." Troops from more than 20 nations will participate.

"North Thunder drills represent a clear message that the kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its brothers and friends of the participating countries stand united to confront all challenges and maintain peace and stability in the region," the agency said, CNN reports.

Jordan, Bahrain, Senegal, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Sudan, Kuwait, the Maldives, Morocco, Pakistan, Chad, Tunisia, Comoro Islands, Djibouti, Malaysia, Egypt, Mauritania and Mauritius are among those joining Saudi Arabia in the exercise.

The military exercise comes two months after Saudi Arabia announced it was forming a coalition of 34 nations to fight terrorism.

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