By Diana Shalhub
ISTANBUL (AA) – Egypt on Saturday opened a new naval base, called "Third of July," in the northwest region bordering Libya.
According to the Egyptian official TV, President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi inaugurated the biggest Egyptian naval base that spreads over 10 million square meters (107.6 million square meters) in the northwestern Jarjoub region.
In his speech at the opening ceremony, Egyptian Navy Commander-in-chief Ahmed Khaled said the base will provide security to the Suez Canal, achieve maritime security and address illegal immigration.
The state-owned al-Ahram daily said the navy base includes 74 military installations and a number of exercise fields in addition to an airfield and an operation center.
The "Third of July" navy base is the third largest military base inaugurated by al-Sisi since he took power in 2014. He previously opened the "Mohamed Naguib Military Base" in July 2017 near the western border with Libya and the "Bernice" military base in January 2020 on the Red Sea near the southern border with Sudan.
In the past years, Egypt hosted a number of joint military exercises with countries, including the US, Russia, Italy, France, the United Arab Emirates, Oman and Sudan.
*Ahmed Asmar contributed to this report from Ankara