A bid to reverse budget proposals to retire the UK Royal Air Force's (RAF's) fleet of Raytheon Sentinel R1 Airborne Stand-Off Radar (ASTOR) aircraft appears to have been rebuffed.
During the UK Ministry of Defence's annual budget round, known as ABC17, air force chiefs were pushing to extend the service of the fleet of five Sentinel R1 aircraft, but Jane's understands these moves were unsuccessful.
At the same time, the RAF was seeking to reverse immediate budget cuts that mandated the retirement of one of the aircraft from use this year. This was also turned down because of the tight financial position faced by the ministry, which is facing rising costs due to a drop in the value of the UK's currency and lower-than-expected returns from an ongoing programme of civilian staff cuts and property sell-offs.
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