Pakistan has become the first of Turkey’s friends to announce participation in the country’s “Mediterranean Shield” exercise as Ankara eyes transforming the 13-year-old operation into an international military exercise.
Currently, Pakistan is taking part in the Eastern Mediterranean-2019 Invitation Exercise with its PNS Alamgir frigate, a maritime patrol aircraft and a maritime special forces team. Pakistan is also slated to participate in the Turkish Navy’s upcoming Mediterranean Shield Operation.
Eight additional countries expected to join drills
Pakistan’s participation in the Operation Mediterranean Shield has actually transformed the drills into an international event.
Turkey’s Mediterranean Shield operation was launched using national capabilities in 2006 to protect Turkey’s maritime security interests in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Countries such as Albania, Azerbaijan, Algeria, Georgia, Libya, Lebanon, Tunisia, and Jordan are expected to announce their participation in the drills.