US Congress was notified of a contract to continue Marine Corps training of the UAE's Presidential Guard. (UAE Presidential Guard)
DUBAI — The US Congress was notified Wednesday of a $150 million US Marine Corps training contract for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Presidential Guard, according to a statement by the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA).
The foreign military sale notification is a blanket order for training and logistical support.
The proposed contract would continue US Marine Corps training of the UAE’s Presidential Guard for counterterrorism, counterpiracy, critical infrastructure protection and national defense, the DSCA said in a statement.
“The training also provides engagement opportunities through military exercises, training, and common equipment. The Presidential Guard currently uses these skills alongside U.S. forces, particularly in Afghanistan,” according to the statement.
The UAE Presidential Guard is a military unit that operates outside of the conventional framework of traditional armed forces such as ground, marine and air forces.
Formed between 2010 and 2011, the Presidential Guard differs in organization, armament, training and, ultimately, the missions it undertakes. In June 2009, former Australian Maj. Gen. Mike Hindmarsh, ex-commander of the Middle East area of operations and ex-Special Operations Command and Special Air Service chief, was appointed to organize the strike force under a national security adviser designation.
Under his command, the Presidential Guard was born out of the merger of several UAE Armed Forces units brought together under one command and one flag, which operates on land, sea and air.
According to the DSCA, implementation of this proposed sale will not require the permanent assignment of any US government or contractor representatives to the UAE. Training teams will travel to the country on a temporary basis.