By David Oliver and Paolo Valpolini
SOFEX, the Special Operations Forces Exhibition and Conference that takes place in Amman every two years, reached its 12th edition, and was inaugurated on May 8th by HM King Abdullah II. The King, who is also the Supreme Commander, was accompanied by HRH Crown Prince Hussein, and was received by HRH Prince Faisal Ibn Al Hussein and by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Lt. Gen. Mahmoud Freiha.
The King and the dignitaries attended a demonstration by Jordanian Special Operations Forces which focus was an attack on a group of insurgents hiding in a remote village by Special Forces dropped by parachute and SOF fast-roping on to the roof of the insurgents hideout by Black Hawk helicopters supported by AH-1F Cobra attack helicopters resulting in the insurgents being killed or captured. The SOF were evacuated by Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) Black Hawk and Super Puma helicopters.
Organised as usual on three major halls, one dedicated to Jordanian companies, all related to the KADDB (King Abdullah II Design and Development Bureau), one to US companies and one to the rest of the world, with some more exhibitors in two other halls and a wide outdoor space hosting mostly Jordanian Armed Forces assets, the exhibition is hosted at the King Abdullah I Airbase 75,000 m² of indoor and outdoor exhibition space and will last three days. Some 350 exhibitors from over 40 countries exhibit their products in Amman, looking not only at the Jordan market but also to Middle East and north-Africa.
On Monday 7 Amman hosted the 9th Middle East Special Operations Commanders Conference; for a report on this event please click here.
Hereafter a selection of the information collected at SOFEX by EDR Magazine correspondents: