Iraq & Pakistan Discuss Defense Cooperation

05.02.2010 Iraq

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An Iraqi Defense Delegation arrived in Pakistan seeking to improve defense cooperation between the two countries. Led by Maj. Gen. Abbas Mohammed Fizaa, the Iraqi Army's Director of Military Training, the five-man delegation conducted a number of discussions with Pakistani Defense Officials.

Pakistani Officials are believed to have offered a wide-ranging military training program for Iraqi servicemen in Pakistani military training establishments. Such arrangements are already in place to train military personnel from a number of countries Pakistan has traditionally had close relations with, but not with Iraq.

The Iraqi Army under Saddam Hussein traditionally had a closer relationship with India than with Pakistan. Pakistan, however, has very close defense relations with other Arab states in the Gulf region, and it will be keen to deepen its relationship with Iraq. No comment from the Secretary of Defense's office was forthcoming about the details of what was discussed.
Though Pakistan is well-placed to provide military training, it will be eager to capitalize on the small number of defense deals that have already been made.
Pakistan has since 2005 supplied Iraq with a large number of small arms and ammunition, Talha tracked Armored Personnel Carriers (APCs) and Mohafiz internal-security vehicles. There has been no further large-scale military cooperation between the two countries since, but the Iraqi Army has a current requirement for ammunition of different calibers and for mortars.
To date, such items have been the staple exports of the Pakistani defense industry, but Pakistan is keen to also export larger products and is hoping increased cooperation will lead to further orders from the Iraqis, such as APCs and, possibly, tanks.




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