The Egyptian Naval Forces conducted a massive amphibious operation in the Mediterranean Sea on 11 December 2019, with the following participants: ENS Gamal Abdel Nasser (L1010), a Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) of the French Mistral class, and its combat team including frigates, missile boats (Soliman Ezzat), one modern German submarine (class 209), a number of anti-submarine units and several elements of navy special forces.
The Egyptian Air Force in the exercise wad represented by modern helicopter Kamov Ka-52 and AH-64D Apache, F-16s, and Chinook under the protection of the air defense. Combat teams from airborne troops, commandos, in addition to special combat teams from the Northern Military Zone were participating in the exercise.
This complex naval exercise included different combat approaches using all elements available to conduct the amphibious operation. The excellent planning and execution done by all services, operational formations, and special forces reflected the capabilities of the apparatuses of the General Command of the Armed Forces to supervise, control, and lead such a complicated exercise at strategic, operational, and tactical levels because that requires coordination at all levels.
The military exercises were designed for imposing maritime control over the economic zones in the Mediterranean Sea and securing Egypt’s interests in this critical region, as part of annual combat training for the country’s armed forces.
For the first time attack helicopters AH-64D and KA-52 of Egyptian Air Force were spotted together aboard the L1010 Gamal Abdel Nasser ship. The Al Quwwat Al Jawwiya Il Misriya (Egypt Air Force) has two squadrons equipped with the AH-64D Apache attack helicopter: 51st Squadron at Wadi al Jandali/Al Qatamiyah (Al Khatamia) and 52nd Squadron at Az Zaqaziq/Abu Hamad. Both squadrons are part of the 550 Attack Heli Brigade. The squadrons operating the Ka-52 “Nile Crocodile” are still unconfirmed. In 2015 Egypt signed a contract with Rosoboronexport for the purchase of 46 Ka-52 combat helicopters.