• China expands runway, harbour at Woody Island

    China continues to expand Woody Island, the largest of the Paracel Islands in the South China Sea. Satellite imagery shows that since October 2013 China has undertaken substantial land reclamation, harbour redevelopment and other infrastructure construction on the island, which is known as Yongxing

  • China unveils Type 11 sidearm

    China's Type 11 (QSZ-11) 5.8 mm self-loading pistol was given its first public showing at Hong Kong Garrison open days at the end of June and beginning of July. Accepted into service in 2011, the Type 11 is intended for use as a personal protection sidearm for senior officers and officials. It is

  • Update: SHAPE confirms Russian forces fighting in Ukraine

    Russian forces are operating inside eastern Ukraine's territory, are using advanced weaponry to support the country's rebel groups, and have clashed directly with Ukrainian soldiers, according to Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE), NATO's top military command. "In the past two

  • A400M acts as tanker aircraft for first time

    The Airbus A400M Atlas transporter has successfully acted as an air-to-air refuelling tanker aircraft for the first time, Airbus Defence and Space announced on 28 August. A company-owned A400M refuelled a Spanish Air Force Boeing EF-18A Hornet fighter aircraft. Airbus said that the tanker test

  • Czech government approves L-159 sale to Iraq

    The Czech Ministry of Defence (MoD) will allow the sale of 15 Aero Vodochody L-159 ALCA light attack and training aircraft to Iraq, it announced on 27 August. The MoD reached an agreement with Czech aircraft maker Aero Vodochody to transfer 11 surplus Army of the Czech Republic (ACR) L-159A

  • Zephyr 7 demonstrates winter capability, tests new payload

    Airbus Defence and Space has completed an uninterrupted 11-day test flight of its Zephyr 7 High Altitude Pseudo-Satellite (HAPS) equipped with a new primary payload, the company announced on 28 August. The trial was conducted for the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) and saw the unmanned aircraft

  • Azeri coastguard revamps fleet with Israeli help

    IHS Jane's can confirm that an Israel Shipyards order to deliver six Shaldag Mk V patrol boats and six Saar 62 offshore patrol vessel (OPVs), an order reportedly for two separate customers, in fact came from the same customer - the Azerbaijan Coast Guard (Sahil M├╝hafizsin). This development

  • BAE Systems Applied Intelligence chief stands down

    BAE Systems has announced that Martin Sutherland, the managing director of its Applied Intelligence business (formerly Detica), will leave on 30 September to take up the role of chief executive of security printing firm De La Rue. Kevin Taylor, currently group strategy director, will take over at

  • Bulgaria agrees to direct up to 20% of defence budget to equipment

    Bulgaria's main political parties have agreed to increase investment in military capabilities by between 15% to 20% of the defence budget, according to interim Defence Minister Velizar Shalamanov. In an interview with Bulgarian newspaper Capital on 16 August, Shalamanov said that "the most

  • China adding towed sonars to Type 054A, Type 056 vessels

    Photographs of two People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Type 054A (Jiangkai II) frigates being fitted out at Huangpu shipyard in Guangzhou province, China, strongly suggest that variable-depth sonars (VDSs) are being installed. The images, published on the cjdby.net website, show a large aperture

  • Colombia's Bicentenario pipeline and related construction works face increasing risk of insurgent attacks until ELN peace talks begin

    Key Points The Bicentenario oil pipeline, parts of which are still under construction, will be one of Colombia's most important pipelines, facilitating the transport of oil from Casanare to the northern Caribbean coast. However, it has become a main target for Colombia's insurgent groups,

  • Convincing evidence of Russian intervention in Ukraine likely to lead to fresh sanctions and escalation of fighting

    EVENT NATO called an emergency meeting on the situation in Ukraine today (29 August), as both it and the United States claimed that Russian military forces were now operating inside Ukraine. Backing up their claim, NATO has released satellite imagery that it says shows a Russian fighting force of

  • Czech Republic restructures special forces command

    The General Staff of the Army of the Czech Republic (ACR) will assume command of the 601st Special Forces Group based in Prostejov from 1 January 2015, when the unit will be transferred to the ACR Special Forces Command responsible for planning and deployment. Command of the 601st Special Forces

  • DoD: US operations in Iraq so far total more than USD500 million

    Pentagon officials estimate that the US assessment and advisory mission on the ground in Iraq, along with an aerial humanitarian assistance and bombing campaign, have cost somewhere more than USD500 million to date. "It has varied since the beginning in mid-June, but on average it's costing

  • East African states pledge troops for standby force

    Ten East African countries have formally pledged forces for the East African Standby Force following a meeting of the East African Council of Ministers of Defence and Security and the Committee of East African Chiefs of Defence on 22 August, Rwandan General Joseph Nzabamwita has announced. It is

  • Ebola outbreak in Nigeria compounds pressure on government expenditure, raising risks of payment delays and tax demands

    EVENT On 28 August, Health Minister Onyebuchi Chukwu confirmed the first case of the ebola virus spreading beyond Nigeria's financial capital Lagos to oil hub Port Harcourt, bringing the total number of recorded cases in Nigeria to 15. On 14 August, Information Minister Labaran Maku disclosed that

  • Finmeccanica agrees terms to end Indian helicopter case

    Finmeccanica has reported that the nominal fines imposed by an Italian court in July relating to a 2010 agreement to supply AgustaWestland AW101 VIP helicopters to India have been confirmed by the judge conducting pre-trial investigations at the Court of Busto Arsizio in Varese. The fines - which

  • Forces of nature - The impact of natural disasters on global security

    Key Points Major natural disasters can have a substantial effect on military and security planning beyond their immediate impact on the ground. The countries in which natural disasters have the most significant economic cost, mainly in the West, are also those best prepared to handle them, with

  • IAI tests B767-300ER with a FBW boom refuelling system

    Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has successfully performed test flights with a B767-300ER aircraft equipped with an advanced fly-by-wire (FBW) boom refuelling system, the company announced on 26 August. Described as an advanced, fully redundant digital system, the new FBW boom system features

  • Indian MoD approves USD2.91 bn worth of acquisitions, cancels LUH tender

    Key Points India's Ministry of Defence has approved USD2.91 billion of acquisitions, including more Arjun MBTs and self-propelled guns The MoD also cancelled the planned acquisition of 197 light utility helicopters, instead opting to relaunch the tender with a licence-build stipulation India's