The Israel Air Force began a joint exercise on Monday in Greece that included dozens of aircraft from foreign armies. Dubbed Iniohos 2017, an official report for the Greek air force noted that the air forces of Israel, the United States, the United Arab Emirates and Italy participated in the exercise. The training patch for the exercise includes the flags of the countries along with the slogan "Act with Awareness."
The Iniohos 2017 exercise is due to be wrapped up next Thursday. Photos from the past several days show F-16 aircraft from the United Arab Emirates alongside an American Air Force transport plane at the Greek air force base. The American army reported that it had dispatched 12 F-16C airplanes and close to 220 crew members to participate in the exercise. The joint exercise, according to a U.S. army report, is strengthening ties among the participating countries, maintain[ing] joint readiness and interoperability," the news release stated.
This is not the first time that the Israel Air Force has cooperated with its UAE counterpart. Last year, Israeli pilots participated in the Red Flag training exercise in the United States in which pilots from Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates and Spain also participated.
Israel and the UAE do not have official diplomatic relations although there are reports in foreign media from time to time of unofficial contacts or of contacts that remain secret. In addition, the Israel Defense Forces is expanding its joint training with other foreign armies. Last week, F-16s participated in joint training in Cyprus and were seen in the skies over Paphos. (end of excerpt)
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