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Friday, February 4, 2011     GET REAL

Arab states recall cadets from training in Egypt

CAIRO — Arab League states have begun recalling their military cadets from Egypt.


Diplomats said a range of Arab and Islamic states have ordered their soldiers to return home from Egypt amid the increasingly violent confrontation between the opposition and the regime of President Hosni Mubarak. They said Egypt's military and security forces had been hosting more than 2,000 foreign cadets, Middle East Newsline reported.

"Egypt has long been the military training center of the Arab world, but the situation has become very dangerous," an Arab diplomat said.

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So far, several countries have sent aircraft to bring their military cadets home. They included Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, which have long used Egypt as a military and police training center.

On Feb. 3, Kuwaiti Defense Minister Jaber Mubarak Al Sabah ordered the Air Force to send two air transports to Cairo to evacuate sheikdom nationals in Egyptian military and police academies. A Kuwaiti military statement did not say how many cadets were studying in Egypt, but diplomats estimated the number at about 500.

Other countries were also said to have sent aircraft to Egypt to return their cadets and other nationals. Saudi Arabia was said to have evacuated more than 20,000 nationals over the last week. The United States was said to have begun the evacuation of hundreds of military trainers and contractors in Egypt.

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