Security news

Dozens of Afghan Air Force aircraft flown out of Afghanistan

By Tim Ripley 18 August 2021
More than 40 Afghan Air Force (AAF) aircraft have been flown to Uzbekistan to prevent them from falling in the hands of the Taliban after the group regain control over Afghanistan on 15 August.  The arrival of the platforms at Termez Airport in southern Uzbekistan was reported by local media on 16 August, with commercial satellite imagery of the site subsequently confirming the relocation of a significant part of the AAF's fleet. Nearly 600 Afghans were reported as being aboard the aircraft and to be seeking asylum in Uzbekistan.  An Afghan A...

Climate change and sustainability: what it means for the UK Royal Navy

By Martin Ewence 11 August 2021
The UK Royal Navy (RN) is shaping up to take on a new threat: climate change. However, do those two subjects sit well in the same sentence? In the context of ‘Global Britain' and the implied requirement to send its diesel burning ships to the new geo-strategic target of the Indo-Pacific region, the RN's reliance on fossil fuels would appear unlikely to diminish in the coming years. It has a widespread estate and an ambitious shipbuilding programme, both of which will continue to demand a high use of natural resources.  The Royal Navy is using...

Interference on SAR imagery offers tool for OSINT analysis

By Tony Roper 04 August 2021
Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) capabilities on Sentinel-1A/B (S1A/S1B) satellites operated by the European Union's Earth Observation Program – Copernicus – have been used by open-source intelligence (OSINT) analysts since S1A was launched on 3 April 2014. S1B followed on 25 April 2016. SAR analysis has become increasingly popular because of social media and the ability to share findings easily among groups of like-minded OSINT analysts.  The data collected by the satellites can be freely accessed using several platforms such as Copernicus's o...

Navy League 2021: Newport News Shipbuilding reports progress on carrier Kennedy as yard returns to mask requirements

By Michael Fabey 03 August 2021
Huntington Ingalls Industries' Newport News Shipbuilding highlighted recent progress on aircraft carrier   John F Kennedy  (CVN 79) on 2 August, as shipyard President Jennifer Boykin confirmed the facility was again implementing m...

China's military-civil fusion aids the growth of wargames

By Riccardo Cociani 27 July 2021
Wargames (兵棋推演, bīngqí tuīyǎn) have experienced a renaissance in China, with computer wargames in particular becoming popular among university students, the People's Liberation Army (PLA), think-tanks, and scientific research institutions. Driven by the government's strategy of military-civil fusion (MCF) and to enhance national defence education among the public, a series of yearly national wargame competitions has been created. Moreover, wargames have also become a useful platform to improve the PLA's professional military education (PME),...

Islamist insurgency intensifies in eastern DRC

26 July 2021
The Allied Democratic Forces (ADF), an armed group that originated in Uganda, are engaged in an Islamist insurgency in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The ADF considers itself part of the Islamic State's Wilayat Wasat Afriqiyya, also commonly known as its Central Africa Province (ISCAP) and officially changed its name to the Wilayat Wasat Afriqiyya in September 2020. Subsequently, the group has grown in strength and confidence, conducting brazen attacks including the largest jail break in Beni, Nord-Kivu province,...

Russia moves equipment away from training ground near Ukrainian border

22 July 2021
Video footage and imagery sourced from social media and analysed by   Janes  between 13 July and 21 July appears to show that Russia has begun to withdraw equipment from a training ground in Voronezh, close to the Ukrainian border.   The equipment, which is assessed by   Janes  to belong to the Central Military District's 41  st  Combined Arms Army, was deployed over thousands of kilometres from central Russia to Voronezh during a buildup of forces in March and April. Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu claimed on 22 Apr...

South Korean defence minister apologises over Covid-19 outbreak on destroyer during anti-piracy mission

By Gabriel Dominguez & Dae Young Kim 20 July 2021
South Korean Defence Minister Suh Wook has issued an apology for the military's failure to prevent a Covid-19 outbreak among personnel of the Republic of Korea Navy's (RoKN's) Cheonghae Anti-Piracy Unit during a mission in waters off eastern Africa...

Singapore Strait sees uptick in sea robbery cases for 1H 2021 despite regional improvement

By Ridzwan Rahmat 19 July 2021
The Singapore Strait recorded an increase in the number of sea robbery cases for the first six months of 2021 despite an overall improvement in the maritime security situation across Asia during the same period.  According to figures released on 16...

Japan protests over major Russian Kuril Islands naval exercises

By Bruce Jones 02 July 2021
Japan has expressed mounting concerns over recent exercises and increased military activity carried out by Russia around the disputed southern Kuril Islands.  The Russian Navy's Pacific Fleet carried out extensive naval manoeuvres from 23–28 June a...

Antarctic infrastructure upgrades enable climate change surveillance

By Elizabeth Buchanan 01 July 2021
The Australian Antarctic Program announced on 28 June that it would undertake winter data collection to inform “the geotechnical and engineering design, delivery and construction methodology of the Davis Aerodrome project”, a plan to construct the first permanent paved runway in Antarctica. According to the statement, the mission had been approved under an Antarctic Treaty Environment Protection permit to inform a ‘Comprehensive Environmental Evaluation'.   The Australian announcement closely followed the 60th anniversary of the Antarctic Tr...

UN commission remains split on drug control

By Dave Bewley-Taylor 30 June 2021
The 64th session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs (CND), the central policy-making body for the UN drug control system, took place on 12–19 April 2021. The session was conducted as a hybrid meeting with both online and in-person attendees in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Although commemoration of the 60th and 50th anniversaries of the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs and the Convention on Psychotropic Substances respectively generated more than the usual levels of support for the UN drug control treaties, increasingly divergent vie...

Russian Border Guard Patrol ship shows new SAM system

By Tony Roper 25 June 2021
Images have emerged online of the Russian Border Guard Project 22460 Rubin-class patrol boat   Rasul Gamzatov  (511) with a new fixed man-portable air-defence (MANPAD) surface-to-air missile system (SAM) installed behind its AK-63...

Russia announces new joint exercise in the Mediterranean Sea

By Bruce Jones 25 June 2021
The Russian Navy and the country's Aerospace Forces have launched a joint exercise in the eastern Mediterranean Sea where the UK's Carrier Strike Group (CSG) is currently located on deployment, Russian newspaper  Kommersant  report...

NATO leaders extend Article 5 mutual defence clause to space domain

By Brooks Tigner 17 June 2021
NATO leaders have thrown down the gauntlet to protect their newest operational domain, warning adversaries that any attacks against allied space assets that threaten the Euro-Atlantic region's security or prosperity will risk triggering Article 5, the 1949 North Atlantic Treaty's mutual defence clause.  At the press conference after NATO's Brussels summit on 14 June, Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg expressed the alliance's determination “to defend itself in space as effectively as we do in all other domains: land, sea, air, and cyber”. (NA...

New ASEAN cyber-security and information centre to be set up in Singapore

By Gabriel Dominguez 17 June 2021
A new ‘Cybersecurity and Information Centre of Excellence' will be set up in Singapore to facilitate information sharing and capacity building among the defence establishments of member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) a...

US transfers some Afghan MD 530F support to UAE

By Gareth Jennings 11 June 2021
The United States has part transferred support of Afghanistan's fleet of MD Helicopters Inc (MDHI) MD 530F Cayuse Warrior light attack and reconnaissance rotorcraft to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), ahead of the planned withdrawal of its forces from the country later in the year.   Washington is to transfer to the UAE some of the work needed to support the Afghanistan fleet of MD 530F helicopters. This is part of a wider move to provide ‘over-the-horizon' support to Kabul once US troops leave later in the year. (438th Air Expeditionary Wing...

Pentagon Budget 2022: US Space Force expanding M-Code GPS capability

By Carlo Munoz 07 June 2021
The US Space Force (USSF) is eyeing fiscal year (FY) 2022 as the window for service officials to make large strides in the development and integration of Military Code (M-Code)-enabled global positioning system (GPS) capabilities into fixed-wing and maritime surface warfare combatants.   Space force acquisition officials requested USD434.1 million for Military GPS User Equipment (MGUE) development, testing, and fielding as part of the service's FY 2022 budget request. The request represented a USD94 million increase over the service's FY 2021...

Sudan to renegotiate Russian naval base agreement

By Bruce Jones 04 June 2021
Re-evaluation is needed of the financial arrangements and leasing conditions for the planned Russian ‘Flamingo' naval base on the Red Sea coast of Sudan, Alexei Chepa, deputy chairman of the State Duma's International Affairs Committee, said on 2 J...

NATO leaders set to launch new ‘defence innovation accelerator' at summit

By Brooks Tigner 02 June 2021
NATO leaders will consider two controversial proposals during their 14 June Brussels summit: increasing the alliance's common funding and creating a ‘defence innovation accelerator' to rapidly develop and absorb emerging disruptive technologies (EDTs) into their militaries. The two agenda topics, among others, were decided by NATO foreign and defence ministers meeting in Brussels on 1 June.   Stoltenberg expects allied leaders to decide in principle on a new innovation accelerator at their 14 June Brussels summit. (NATO)  “We need to sharpen...
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