World

Egypt, Gulf Arab allies discussing anti-extremist military alliance with possible joint force

  • FILE - In this file photo released Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014 by the official Saudi Press Agency, Saudi pilots sits in the cockpit of a fighter jet as part of U.S.-led coalition airstrikes on Islamic State militants and other targets in Syria that began early Tuesday in Saudi Arabia. U.S. Arab allies Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait are discussing creation of a military pact to take on Islamic militants, with the possibility of a joint force to intervene around the Middle East, The Associated Press has learned. Even if no joint force is agreed on, the alliance would coordinate military action, aiming at quick, pinpoint operations against militants rather than longer missions,  officials said. (AP Photo/Saudi Press Agency, File)

    FILE - In this file photo released Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2014 by the official Saudi Press Agency, Saudi pilots sits in the cockpit of a fighter jet as part of U.S.-led coalition airstrikes on Islamic State militants and other targets in Syria that began early Tuesday in Saudi Arabia. U.S. Arab allies Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait are discussing creation of a military pact to take on Islamic militants, with the possibility of a joint force to intervene around the Middle East, The Associated Press has learned. Even if no joint force is agreed on, the alliance would coordinate military action, aiming at quick, pinpoint operations against militants rather than longer missions, officials said. (AP Photo/Saudi Press Agency, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Monday, Oct. 13, 2014 file photo released by the Saudi Press Agency, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal gives a press conference on having forces inside Syria, Iraq and Yemen, with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia. U.S. Arab allies Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, which have been increasing their military cooperation, are discussing the creation of a firmer alliance with the option of a joint force to intervene against Islamic extremists around the Middle East and deter Shiite Iran in the Gulf, The Associated Press has learned. (AP Photo/Saudi Press Agency, File)

    FILE - In this Monday, Oct. 13, 2014 file photo released by the Saudi Press Agency, Saudi Arabia‚Äôs Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal gives a press conference on having forces inside Syria, Iraq and Yemen, with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, in Jiddah, Saudi Arabia. U.S. Arab allies Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, which have been increasing their military cooperation, are discussing the creation of a firmer alliance with the option of a joint force to intervene against Islamic extremists around the Middle East and deter Shiite Iran in the Gulf, The Associated Press has learned. (AP Photo/Saudi Press Agency, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - This undated file image posted on a militant website on Jan. 14, 2014, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, shows fighters from the al-Qaida linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) marching in Raqqa, Syria. U.S. Arab allies Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait are discussing creation of a military pact to take on Islamic militants, with the possibility of a joint force to intervene around the Middle East, The Associated Press has learned in Nov. 2014. Even if no joint force is agreed on, the alliance would coordinate military action, aiming at quick, pinpoint operations against militants rather than longer missions,  officials said.  (AP Photo/Militant Website, File)

    FILE - This undated file image posted on a militant website on Jan. 14, 2014, which has been verified and is consistent with other AP reporting, shows fighters from the al-Qaida linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) marching in Raqqa, Syria. U.S. Arab allies Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait are discussing creation of a military pact to take on Islamic militants, with the possibility of a joint force to intervene around the Middle East, The Associated Press has learned in Nov. 2014. Even if no joint force is agreed on, the alliance would coordinate military action, aiming at quick, pinpoint operations against militants rather than longer missions, officials said. (AP Photo/Militant Website, File)  (The Associated Press)

The Associated Press has learned that U.S. Arab allies Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait are discussing the creation of a military pact against Islamic militants, with the possibility of a joint force to intervene around the Middle East.

Four Egyptian military officials have confirmed the talks to The Associated Press. They say the alliance would be separate from the U.S.-led air campaign against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria.

The alliance, they said, could intervene in other extremist hot-spots: Libya, where militants have taken over several cities, and Yemen, where Shiite rebels have seized control of the capital. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the talks are secret.