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Exercise Olive Grove: 2 Mercians Test Skills In Jordanian Desert

British and Jordanian troops have been testing their readiness for operations in demanding conditions.

2 Mercians and Jordanian army ex olive grove 050220 CREDIT British Army.jpg

Members of the British and Jordanian militaries are testing their skills in a joint exercise.

Exercise Olive Grove is currently underway in Al-Quwayrah, Jordan.

Eighty-nine soldiers from A (Grenadier) Company, 2nd Battalion The Mercian Regiment deployed to the desert on 14 January.

The exercise will finish on Thursday, after which the British soldiers will return to their base in Cyprus.

Exercise Olive Grove tests troops' readiness for operations in a demanding environment like the desert.

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British and Jordanian troops shared their skills during Exercise Olive Grove (Picture: British Army).

"I’ve had 25 new soldiers join the Battalion who have never been overseas with the Army, other than Cyprus where we are based, and this is their first experience of an arid environment," Major Mike Brigham MBE, Officer Commanding A (Grenadier) Company 2 Mercian said.

"We have to be ready to deploy anywhere across the globe.

"This environment is exactly what our soldiers need to be training in."

As part of the exercise, troops were trained in both trench and urban operations.

"We are trained to expect anything and to be ready to overcome it. We will work with anyone who joins the Battalion and make them a better soldier," Lance Corporal Archie Galbraith said.

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The troops worked together in rural and urban environments.

They also took part in a live-fire demonstration on 28 January. 

When not taking part in the military training, the soldiers repaired and decorated a community centre for refugees from Syria run by the UN Refugee Agency.

Cover image: British and Jordanian troops took part in a joint live fire exercise in the desert (Picture: British Army).