A well-kept secret of the Moroccan military

June 1, 2023 – 8:00 PM – Morocco

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The Moroccan Air Force has set up a secret military base in Sidi Yahya-el Karb, near Rabat, where the latest generation of military equipment is kept, which the kingdom has acquired in recent years from its partners, including Israel.

The military base houses, among others, 24 medium-range missiles ‘Sky Dragon 50’ purchased from China, one of the Kingdom’s military partners, along with Morocco, the United States and Israel. Merca 2. Military analysts looking at satellite images of the Sidi Yahya-El Garb air base noted the presence of agents and hangars of various sizes and functions. This suggests the presence of air-to-air missile systems from the site.

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In addition to the Chinese missile system, Morocco acquired the French short-range missile system ‘VL Milka’ and signed a $200 million contract with missile manufacturer MBDA (a subsidiary of Airbus) to purchase vertical missile systems. As part of the military’s modernization, it recently acquired the mobile anti-missile system HIMARS from the US, following earlier purchases of advanced weapons such as Apache helicopters and Abrams tanks.

After Rabat normalized diplomatic relations with the Jewish state under the US-led Abraham Accords in December 2020, the Kingdom intensified its military cooperation with Israel. This enabled the acquisition of the ‘Skylock Dome’ antidrone system manufactured by Skylock Systems, a subsidiary of the powerful Avnon Group. It has “optical and thermal surveillance equipment and a radar to track and monitor any suspicious activity,” said Moroccan security expert Abdel Hamid Harfi.

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Also Read: Morocco Acquires US Missile System HIMARS

Morocco and Israel have signed an agreement to manufacture kamikaze drones in Morocco. A project that has already become a reality. Moroccan company Bio Cellular Design Aeronautics will manufacture the drones with Israeli expertise. Morocco also has Turkish Bayraktar TB2 drones and Israeli Hermes 900 and Barak 8 missile systems, and is interested in the Barak MX. The only problem is maintaining all these systems, which over the years lose their effectiveness and become unusable.

Ferdinand Woolridge

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