The military exercise is the second to take place in less than a week

El Ejército de Argelia realiza nuevas maniobras militares en Tinduf

REUTERS/ABDELAZIZ BOUMZ - Algerian soldiers stand guard

The Algerian army has begun a series of "large-scale" night-time military manoeuvres. These exercises, which are said to have been carried out with live ammunition, have taken place in the Algerian town of Tindouf, a border area with Morocco and Western Sahara, where the camps of the Polisario Front are located. This is the second time in a week that the Algerian troops have carried out this type of manoeuvre. It is precisely in this area that the tactical exercises will take place as part of Operation African Lion, a joint US-Moroccan operation.

Moreover, these exercises will coincide with the holding of the international summit against terrorism, hosted by Morocco.

In this way, the execution of these exercises, especially in this area, contributes to increasing regional tension, coinciding with the current diplomatic crisis between Morocco and Algeria. 


The images, broadcasted on Algerian national television, show a tactical exercise dubbed "Al Somoud 2022". Several units from various forces and weapons were reportedly involved, under the supervision of the army chief of staff, Said Chanegriha.

In recent days, Algeria has also reportedly carried out another naval tactical exercise, under the name "Hurricane 2022". In this exercise, a missile was launched for use in what is known as "anti-surface warfare". This type of warfare is characterised as naval and is directed against surface ships. Generally, any type of weapon, sensor or operation is used to attack or limit the effectiveness of a potential adversary.

The missile is said to have been launched off the coast of western Algeria, in a stretch of sea bordering Morocco and Spain, with the intervention of submarines.


According to the Algerian Ministry of Defence, 'the naval units carried out the exercise with great professionalism (...) the surface target was destroyed with great precision and with artillery fire on the sea target, executed with great efficiency'.

Similarly, an Algerian army commander who reportedly participated in these operations indicated that "the profound transformation of the patterns of modern warfare has conclusively demonstrated that achieving victory in battle does not depend only on the type of weaponry and its advanced systems that armies possess, but depends primarily on the mentality of the fighter, the quality of his training, the level of his physical and psychological preparation, as well as his ability to make decisions, the right thing to do in all circumstances and stages of the battle".
They also announced that these exercises would have involved fighter planes, helicopters and tanks that would have been deployed in the province of Tindouf. 
In addition, the Algerian Deputy Defence Minister, Ahmed Gaid Salah, indicated that "during the military exercises, the level of preparedness of the military commanders to control groups of combined arms will be tested. For the commanders, it will be practice in the preparation and execution of military operations".


All this comes at a time of rift between Morocco and Algeria. Last August, Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune unilaterally declared a diplomatic rupture with the Alawi kingdom. Tebboune argued that this decision was in response to a series of "disagreements" with the Alawi kingdom that could no longer be sustained.

Over the last few months, the diplomatic crisis has grown rather than been resolved. Even more so after Spain recognised Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara. In response, Algeria decided to cut gas supplies to Spain by around 25%, which has forced Spain to seek alternative gas supplies such as Qatar, with whom it has signed a multi-million dollar investment contract, elevating the two countries' relations to a "strategic partnership".