US & Jordan Kick Off Chemical Drills Near Syrian Border

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The United States and Jordan have just launched a joint chemical drill 50 Km south of Syria

Codenamed Eager Lion, the a 12-day military exercise is taking place at the Joint Training Center in Amman and Zarqa, Jordan, and will include a mobile laboratory response to a ‘simulated chemical incident.’

The drill started on Sunday, a day after the U.S., France and Britain launched missiles at Syrian military targets in response to an alleged chemical weapons attack in Douma a week ago.

Sputnik news reports: Jordanian Brigadier-General Mohammed al-Thlaji, commander of the exercises from the Jordanian side, said the drills will involve all branches of the military, including special forces. Training will include counterterrorism, border security, crisis management, strategic communications and future planning, he said, according to Jordanian media.

Approximately 7,000 troops are involved in the drills, including 3,500 US personnel.

US CENTCOM director of Exercises & Training Maj. Gen. Jon Mott has confirmed that a mobile lab team will respond to a simulated chemical incident. The officer told reporters that chemical weapons are a threat that’s “all too real, as we’ve seen recently in Syria.”

Mott called the Eager Lion drills a “golden opportunity” to work out threat scenarios which may arise in the region at the operational level.


Niamh Harris
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