According to the French Defence Minister on Sunday, the pact - inked with Yemeni counterpart General Abd Allah Ali Alaiwa - stipulates equipping six gunboats France had earlier supplied to the Yemeni coastguard.

Michele Alliot-Marie added that under the accord, joint exercises would take place between the two countries' naval forces and special forces. 

The agreement also provides for setting up radars and other military equipment on the island of Meon in Bab al-Mandab strait in the Red Sea.

The equipment would enable Yemeni forces and French forces based in nearby Djibouti to cooperate in fighting drug and arms smuggling, and terrorism.