United Arab Emirates Facilities
The UAE provides ongoing and essential support for US forces in the region, hosting more than 2,000 US military personnel. The UAE provides critical logistics support for US Navy fleet operations; US Naval vessels visited more UAE ports than any other foreign ports in the world. The UAE supports the US Air Force through critical logistics and facilities at Al Dhafra Air Base. Minhad Air Base is a critical hub for Coalition/ISAF partners in Afghanistan, including the Australians, Dutch, Canadians, Brits and Kiwis. The United Arab Emirates [UAE] has provided valuable support to the United States and coalition operations in the region, allowing the deployment of aircraft and the use of its airspace. This includes facilities for an aerial refueling unit that supports Operation Southern Watch as part of UN sanctions against Iraq, and liberty privileges for US service members at the port of Jebel Ali.
Intensive use has been made of commercial ports, including about 200 calls a year at the Jebel Ali port in the United Arab Emirates. Other important ports [Mina] in the UAE are Abu Dhabi, Al Fujayrah, Khawr Fakkan, Mina Khalid, Mina Rashid, Mina Saqr, and Mina Zayid. The Fujairah to Jebel Ali land link is the Navy's logistics pipeline to the Gulf should the Strait of Hormuz be closed. Cargo unloaded at Al Fujairah, on the Gulf of Oman, can be subsequently transported via highway to destinations on the Arabian Gulf and hence bypass the need for transit through the Strait of Hormuz.
The United States has enjoyed friendly relations with the UAE since 1971. Private commercial ties, especially in petroleum, have developed into friendly government-to-government ties which include security assistance. The breadth, depth, and quality of U.S.-UAE relations increased dramatically as a result of the U.S.-led coalition's campaign to end the Iraqi occupation of Kuwait. The United States was the third country to establish formal diplomatic relations with the UAE and has had an ambassador resident in the UAE since 1974.
Situated along the Arabian Gulf, Abu Dhabi is the site of an international airport. Urban development projects have relieved a housing shortage caused by rapid growth since the late 1960s. The main thoroughfare is the 7-kilometer (4-mile) long Corniche, a landscaped, seafront promenade. Abu Dhabi was founded in the 1760s and in 1795 became the seat of rulers of the emirate of Abu Dhabi. The town had only local significance until the discovery of oil reserves in the area in the late 1950s and early 1960s. When oil exports began in 1962, the few low-rise dwellings scattered around the Old Fort gradually gave way to 10 - 11 storey tower blocks, and these were subsequently replaced by even larger towers. One of the many unofficial names Abu Dhabi has acquired is - 'Manhattan of the Middle East'. The other common name is - 'Garden City of the Gulf'. In 1971 the city was made the federal capital of the newly formed United Arab Emirates. It is also the capital of the emirate of Abu Dhabi.
Dubai is the second largest of the seven emirates that make up the country of U.A.E. Once a central trading center for the region, the city continues the tradition by offering a host of 'souqs' offering everything under the sun; Gold, persian rugs, antiques and spices are just a few of the goods one encounters while browsing the markets. Aside from the shopping, the surrounding area is also full of interesting places to tour. Desert safaris, canyon hikes and many rounds of golf kept the crew busy during their stay.
Fujairah, the youngest of the UAE's seven emirates, fronts the Gulf of Oman and makes a good base for exploring the eastern coast, regarded as the prettiest part of the country. It boasts a museum showcasing archaeological and ethnographic displays, a spooky old town and a 300 year old fort. Bithna, 12km (8mi) north-west of Fujairah, has several archaeological sites, including the Long Chambered Tomb, thought to have been a communal burial place, and an impressive fort.
Fujairah Emirate is the seventh in the union of U.A.E. It is the bride of the Emirates on the East Coast of the Gulf of Oman. It is the only Emirate on the Gulf of Oman, its area is 1,450 square kilometers. It is characterized by its mountains that have different colors, its fertile valleys that are full of natural water springs and its coastal belt with its clean golden sands extending to more than 90 kilometers. 80% of the population of the Emirate inhabit this coastal belt. The total population of the Emirate is 80,000, according to the last census of the State Ministry of Planning. 20% of the population live in the oasis and mountainous valleys. Al Fujairah was named after a small stream in the Emirate. The Emirate lies in the Eastern part of the Arabian Peninsula. It is considered to be the crossing part to and from the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council, across the Indian ocean to the states of East Asia, Europe and the whole world.
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