French Ambassador to Kuwait H.E. Marie Masdupuy hosted a reception aboard the French frigate Cassard on 25 November to mark the 6th anniversary of the ‘Pearl of the West’ joint military exercise. Commander of the Kuwait Navy, Major-General Khaled Al-Kandari was the special guest at the function.
In her address to the gathering, French Ambassador Marie Masdupuy lauded the Kuwaiti side for the name ‘Pearl of the West’ for the joint military exercise that was decided many years ago, as the name pearl is part of the historical identity of Kuwait, and also, the pearl of the West is considered to be France. She added it was a beautiful name and thanked Kuwait for the choice.
She underscored that the ‘Pearl of the West’ is a very important joint military exercise held every four years in Kuwait between the armed forces of the two countries. She mentioned that the French frigate Cassard has travelled various seas of the world since 1987 and this reflects the effectiveness and the high efficiency of French navy personnel.
“The name of the French frigate is a tribute to a member of the French navy, who believed in serving his country at the end of the 17th century and the beginning of the 18th century. He served his country well, and was one of the first pioneers in the French navy of humanitarian operations,” She explained.
In conclusion, French Ambassador Masdupuy described the ‘Pearl of the West’ 2018 exercise as very successful, and reflected the depth of bilateral relations between France and Kuwait.
On his part, Kuwait’s naval force commander Major General Khaled Al-Kandari emphasized the readiness of the Kuwaiti navy to face any emergency, and stressed that the navy force is always present on territorial waters to continuously strengthen and protect the sovereignty of Kuwait.
Then, he stated that the French navy is one of the oldest naval forces in the world, and noted their great experience in dealing with events.
Major General Al-Kandari stressed that Kuwait’s naval forces is benefiting from France’s experience in the military and navy field, particularly under the Kuwaiti-French military cooperation agreement that was signed.
He emphasized that the ‘Pearl of the West’ exercise between the Kuwaiti and French forces reflects the strong relations between the Kuwaiti army and the French army.
For his part, the military attaché in the French embassy, Colonel Patrick Pique, stressed the strength of the French and Kuwait relations, and explained the different dimensions of the ‘Pearl of the West’ exercise, which shows the close military cooperation between the two countries and showcases the capabilities and efficiency of the French armed forces.
The French frigate is a warship that performs many other tasks such as collecting information, and its crew of 230 personnel participated in the ‘Pearl of the West’ exercises.