Morocco, Israel sign defence industry, security agreements

by Charles Forrester

Israeli Minister of Defense Benny Gantz and Moroccan Minister Delegate to the Head of Government in Charge of National Defence Abdellatif Loudiyi at the signing ceremony. (Israeli MoD/Ariel Hermoni)

Morocco and Israel have signed a raft of agreements to bolster defence and security co-operation during the visit by Israeli Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense Benny Gantz to the north African country.

Following a meeting between Gantz and Abdellatif Loudiyi, Moroccan Minister Delegate to the Head of Government in charge of the National Defence Administration on 24 November, the two signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) covering “exchanges of experience and expertise, technology transfer, training, and co-operation in the field of defence industry”, the official Maghreb Arabe Presse outlet reported.

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Oshkosh Defense receives USD591 million JLTV contract

by Ashley Roque

The US Army recently awarded Oshkosh Defense a USD591 million contract modification for its Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) line.

Under the deal, the company will produce 1,669 JLTV trucks and 868 JLTV trailers by the end of August 2023, according to the service announcement. From this pot, 125 vehicles will be delivered to NATO and allied partners, including Brazil, Lithuania, Montenegro, and Slovenia, while the remaining ones will go to the US Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps (USMC) and Army, according to the company and army.

“Integrated lethality on an agile and protected vehicle like the Oshkosh JLTV is quickly filling capability gaps that exist in many international militaries,” John Lazar, the vice president and general manager of international programmes for Oshkosh Defense, said in a 29 November statement. “This past year we've seen an increased interest in the Oshkosh JLTV from international customers with dynamic demonstrations and live fires across Europe, with more planned for 2022.”

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Croatia signs contracts for 12 Rafale fighters

by Igor Tabak

Croatia signed the contracts for the acquisition of 12 used Rafale fighters from France on 25 November. (Dassault)

Almost six months since selecting the Rafale fighter, Croatia on 25 November signed the contracts for the acquisition of 12 aircraft from France: 10 single seaters and two twin seaters.

On the second day of French President Emmanuel Macron's visit to Croatia, Croatian Defence Minister Mario Banožić and his French counterpart, Florence Parly, signed a technical agreement on defence co-operation. Banožić also signed contracts on the Rafale procurement with Dassault CEO Eric Trappier, MBDA CEO Eric Beranger, and the director of Safran's Defence Division, Frédéric Mazzanti.

The Rafales will be up to 14 years old when they arrive in Croatia, with around 3,800 flight hours per aircraft remaining. Deliveries are expected to start in late 2023, with the first actual arrival of eight aircraft in Croatia during 2024 and the remaining four in early 2025.

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Malaysia begins evaluating proposals to replace fleet of Hawk Mk 108/208s

by Ridzwan Rahmat

A file image depicting a Royal Malaysian Air Force Hawk 208 in the foreground with a Hawk 108 in the background. (BAE Systems)

The Malaysian government has begun evaluating proposals to replace the country's ageing fleet of Hawk Mk108/208 light-attack and lead-in trainer aircraft.

The matter was disclosed by Malaysian Minister of Defence Hishammuddin Hussein on 25 November in his reply to parliamentary questions on a fatal accident involving a Hawk Mk 108 aircraft.

The accident, which occurred on 17 November at the Royal Malaysian Air Force's (RMAF's) Butterworth Air Base in Penang, killed one crew member and injured another. It is the latest in a series of fatal crashes involving the aircraft type in Malaysia since 1998.

In his reply to a question from Ahmad Nazlan Indris, Malaysian member of parliament, Hishammuddin said that the government had recently invited international contractors to submit their respective proposals to replace the Hawk Mk 108/208s under the Light Combat Aircraft/Fighter Lead-In-Trainer (LCA/FLIT) programme.

The programme intends to acquire 36 LCA/FLIT airframes for the RMAF in two phases. Eighteen airframes are being procured in the 2021 process, with the remaining aircraft to be acquired from 2025 onwards.

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