• RUAG buys Clearswift

    Swiss company RUAG has bought British cyber security business Clearswift, the company announced on 20 December. The companies said that they would not be disclosing details. Clearswift, which specialises in data loss prevention, will join RUAG Defence in a new cyber security unit the company had

  • British Army to form first strike brigade, cut MBT numbers

    The British Army is to create an experimental group to trial the concepts of operation for its new 'strike brigades' and bring the new General Dynamics Ajax family of armoured vehicles into service. Announced to Parliament by UK defence secretary Michael Fallon on 15 December, the move will however

  • British Army Watchkeeper landing problems persist

    A computer glitch that causes Thales Watchkeeper 450 (WK450) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to mistakenly think they have landed has not been fixed, according to a new inquiry report released by the UK Defence Safety Authority (DSA). Problems with the WK450's laser-altimeter makes the UAV's fight

  • Explosive device detonates in Northern Ireland's County Armagh

    AN EXPLOSIVE device - described in reports as a pipe bomb - detonated in the Primates Manor area of the town of Armagh in County Armagh in Northern Ireland in the early hours of 15 December, The Belfast Telegraph reported. The remains of the exploded device were discovered later that day during a

  • Fincantieri sets up subsidiary in Australia

    Italian ship-building group Fincantieri has formed a subsidiary in Australia as part of its bid for that country's frigate programme, the company announced on 16 December. Fincantieri Australia will open its headquarters in Canberra, the company said in a statement. Fincantieri is one of several

  • Italy receives first operational F-35 combat aircraft

    Italy became the first country outside of the United States to receive its operational Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft onto home soil, with the arrival of two F-35As at Amendola Air Force Base on 12 December. The milestone, which took place just hours before

  • Swiss parliament's rejection of EU migrant cap likely to facilitate emergency deal with EU, ensuring Single Market access

    On 16 December, the Swiss parliament rejected a law that envisaged curbing EU migration in order to maintain Switzerland's close economic relations with the bloc (National Council: 98 in favour, 67 against, 33 abstentions; and Council of States: 24 in favour, 5 against, 13 abstentions). Instead, a

  • Diehl develops air-to-surface capability for IRIS-T AAM

    Key Points Upgraded software insertion is the only requirement for the IRIS-T air-to-surface solution No further air-to-surface trials currently planned with F-16 or other platforms The Royal Norwegian Air Force (RNoAF) has tested a new air-to-surface capability developed by Diehl BGT Defence for

  • Constitutional Court's decision to bar independence vote in Catalonia likely to trigger political instability in the region

    EVENT On 14 December, Spain's Constitutional Court provisionally suspended plans approved in the Catalan regional parliament on 6 October to hold an independence referendum in September 2017. The regional parliament's decision, supported by 72 pro-independence deputies in the 135-seat chamber,

  • Czech Republic picks Elta for radar requirement

    The Czech Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on 14 December that it had selected IAI Elta Systems as the winner of its tender for new 3D mobile air defence radar (MADR) for the Army of the Czech Republic (ACR). The MoD said it will prepare a contract with Elta Systems before 23 December to supply

  • EU leaders call for stronger security/migration support for Libya

    National leaders meeting in Brussels on 15 December called on the EU to boost its effort to strengthen Libya's security. The EU's naval mission in the central Mediterranean - EUNAVFOR MED, dubbed 'Sophia' - will continue its training of Libya's coastguard, while parallel initiatives "need to

  • EU leaders lay down deadlines for new defence fund and other measures

    EU leaders reconfirmed their commitment to jointly develop capabilities for Europe's defence and expeditionary missions and to make the capabilities "available when needed". Gathering in Brussels on 15 December, they said the EU and its member states "must be able to contribute

  • Fallon confirms USMC F-35s to join maiden deployment of HMS Queen Elizabeth

    The UK defence secretary confirmed on 15 December previously revealed plans to have the US Marine Corps (USMC) embark aboard the Royal Navy's new Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier on its maiden operational deployment in 2021. The announcement was made by Michael Fallon during a meeting in London

  • Poland orders four Regina artillery squadrons from HSW

    Poland has ordered four 'Regina' artillery squadrons from Huta Stalowa Wola (HSW) in the largest contract the Polish Ministry of National Defence (MOND) has placed locally since the country's independence in 1990. Worth PLN4.65 billion (USD1.1 billion) and signed on 14 December, the contract

  • Romania's Social Democrats likely to lead coalition government after election, increasing budget spending, potentially threatening anti-corruption efforts

    Key Points A PSD-led government is likely to curb anti-corruption efforts either by protecting MPs or through legislation. The cabinet is likely to increase budget spending in the healthcare and education sectors, and tax cuts are likely from 2018. Privatisation attempts are likely to be stalled

  • Skeldar trialled with weather measurement payload

    UMS Skeldar has continued in its partnership with ESG, integrating a new payload on board the Skeldar V-200 rotary-wing unmanned aircraft system. Over a two-week period the companies integrated and tested weather measurement sensors on the Skeldar V-200; the sensors were developed under a research

  • South Korea's Hanwha secures Polish K9 export

    South Korean firm Hanwha Techwin has secured a KRW280 billion (USD263 million) contract from Poland to supply its K9 Thunder 155 mm/52-calibre self-propelled tracked howitzer, the company has announced. In a filing to the Korean Exchange on 15 December, Hanwha Techwin said the deal features the

  • UK advances defence industrial co-operation deals with France

    British bilateral defence industrial co-operation with France progressed further on 15 December, as several deals were agreed on joint development and support programmes at the countries' High Level Working Group in Paris. Member of Parliament Harriett Baldwin, Under Secretary of State for Defence

  • UK advances defence industrial cooperation deals with France

    British bilateral defence industrial co-operation with France progressed further on 15 December, as several deals were agreed on joint development and support programmes at the countries' High Level Working Group in Paris. Member of Parliament Harriett Baldwin, Under Secretary of State for Defence

  • UK parliamentary committee chairs urge review of Saudi arms sales

    The chairs of two UK parliamentary committees signed a letter to the country's foreign secretary on 14 December, asking the government to review its position on sales of defence equipment to Saudi Arabia. Stephen Twigg, a Labour MP who chairs the Commons International Development Select Committee,