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Bahrain defence exhibition opens amid rising tension in region

Conference brings together more than 50 senior military and political leaders and more than 180 exhibitors

Manama: Bahrain International Defence Exhibition and Conference (BIDEC) covering air, land and sea was opened on Monday in the capital Manama amid agreements on the significance of dealing decisively with the rising tension over security in the region.

Held under the patronage of King Hamad Bin Eisa Al Khalifa, the three-day conference in its first edition is bringing together more than 50 senior military and political leaders and officials from several countries and more than 180 exhibitors and international manufacturers and suppliers of the most advanced equipment, technology and military systems.

“The world is witnessing a series of successive events in which rapid changes are taking place with impact and risks over all, thus affecting growth and development,” Shaikh Nasser Bin Hamad Al Khalifa, Commander of Bahrain Royal Guard and BIDEC 2017 High Committee Chairman, said on the eve of the opening ceremony.

“They also highlight the inevitability of forming military alliances between international forces in order to serve as an effective barrier against the negativity of those variables, strengthen the workforce and coordinate the efforts being exerted in order for the world to be a coherent force that shares common visions and a common position.”

The exhibition held as part of the international forum features 115 display stands for local, regional and international major decision-makers from governments, armies and defence industries from more than 50 countries, organisers said.

A Middle East Military Alliances and Coalitions Conference (MEMAC) will be held alongside BIDEC.

In his remarks, Shaikh Abdullah Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa, Chairman of the Board of Trustees at the Bahrain Centre for Strategic, International and Energy Studies “Derasat” and Spokesperson and Chairman of MEMAC Organising Committee, said that having a neighbour that is a state sponsor of terrorism undermines the security of the region and this is a matter of concern.”

“Iran, unfortunately, plays a destabilising role in the region, as can be seen in its involvement in different hotspots in the Middle East such as in Yemen, Iraq and Syria,” he said.

Bahrain which also suffered from foiled terror operations and explosives is working with its allies to deal with the situation, he added.

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