Syrian forces carry out exercise

Updated:2011-12-21 18:03


DAMASCUS,Syria - The Syrian navy and air forces carried out Tuesday two separate maneuvers with live ammunition under war-like circumstances to test their fighting capabilities, state-run SANA news agency reported.

SANA said the air force's maneuver included military airdrops, use of all kinds of weapons, and targeting with high accuracy, and it aimed to test the air defense system's capability to counter any possible aggression on the country.

SANA also quoted Syrian army's chief of staff, Jasim Furaig, as saying that the forces exhibited "good preparation and their outstanding performance" in the war games, stressing on the forces ' readiness in fending off "any attack by the enemies of the state."

Earlier in December, Syrian missile forces carried out maneuvers with live ammunition under war-like circumstances with the aim of testing the missile weaponry in confronting attacks.

The move raised concerns of Israel. Israeli army sources said the war games were meant to warn the international powers not to militarily intervene in Syria's unrest.

Tuesday's war games came one day after Syria agreed to allow in an Arab League (AL) observer mission to monitor the situation in the country.

Ahmed bin Helli, deputy secretary general of the AL, said Tuesday that the pan-Arab body would send an advance team of observers to Syria on Thursday. The team, headed by Samir Saif al- Yazal, assistant to AL chief Nabil al-Arabi, will include security, legal and administrative experts.