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Key US military air hub to open in Kuwait

The logistics supply facility ‘fills a gap’ until an air base opens in 2023

Gulf News

Kuwiat: A major air hub, serving the US military, the Kuwaiti Air Force and coalition partners, will open soon in the Gulf country, Kuwaiti newspaper Al Rai reported on Thursday.

The “cargo city”, which will serve as a strategic military logistics supply point, is constructed near Kuwait International airport, the paper added, citing a statement from the US command in Kuwait.

The facility will serve as the largest aerial port of debarkation in the Middle East and is intended to fill a gap until its replacement, West Al-Mubarak Air Base, is scheduled to open sometime in 2023, the statement added.

“Once finished, the total functional space at ‘Cargo City’ will feature an area of nearly 33,000 square meters,” Capt. Sean Murphy, a civil engineering flight officer in charge of the project, said.

“We are optimizing our workspace by reducing our footprint from 230,000 square meters, excluding the flightline,” Murphy said, according to website Military.com.

Murphy added that the port gives allies an extra hub, albeit a temporary one, for operations in the Middle East. The 32 –million- dollar project will also include a parking ramp and taxiway, both scheduled to be completed sometime in November.

Kuwaiti counterparts, along with the units, imported more than 1.24 million cubic metres of fill for the construction site, Military.com reported this week. Teams worked for more than four months to move nearly 400 trucks of soil, dirt and rock daily, the report added.

West Al-Mubarak Air base will house future operations, while the “cargo city” will eventually function as a permanent holding area at the airport, according to US officials.

They said that a new air base is crucial to more efficiently distribute cargo to US and coalition forces across the Middle East, acting as a new “gateway” for the US Central Command area of operations.

There has been no official Kuwaiti comment.

Washington is a main strategic ally of Kuwait. In 1991, the US led an international military alliance that liberated Kuwait from invading Iraqi troops.

Qatar, another Gulf country, is home to the largest US military base in the Middle East.

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