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Variant reduces Cobra Gold ops

The opening parade of the Cobra Gold 2020 military exercise in the northern province of Phitsanulok on Feb 25, 2020. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)
The opening parade of the Cobra Gold 2020 military exercise in the northern province of Phitsanulok on Feb 25, 2020. (Photo by Pattarapong Chatpattarasill)

The scale of Cobra Gold, an annual joint military exercise conducted by Thailand and the United States and set this year for Feb 20 to March 5, has been downsized to 1,700 troops to be drawn from the US and other countries.

A source in the Royal Thai Armed Forces said that although this year’s Cobra Gold was to include substantial war game exercises, the emergence of Omicron has forced the downsizing.

Scheduled drills will be held in eastern and central provinces and involve command post, humanitarian/civic assistance as well as field-training exercises.

As had happened last year, training that requires a large number of personnel will be cancelled, including live fire, amphibious and evacuation operations.

In total, 3,600 troops will take part in the joint exercise, of whom 1,900 will be Thai soldiers with the rest comprising mostly US personnel and those from other countries.

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