• Mattis sees future US space opportunities with Brazil

    Key Points Mattis said he sees future opportunities with Brazil for advanced research, particularly in space Brazil has a healthy appetite for enhanced space partnerships, but regulatory problems loom US Secretary of Defense James Mattis sees future opportunities for advanced research with

  • Saudi-led coalition to investigate bus bombing

    The United States and United Kingdom support the investigation into an apparent airstrike that hit a bus carrying school children in Yemen that will be carried out by the Saudi-led coalition, not an independent body. The strike took place on 9 August and hit the bus when it was in a crowded market

  • Russian airborne troops increase indirect fire capabilities

    Russian airborne troops (VDV) are strengthening their indirect fire capabilities, an industry source has told Jane’s. “In early August, the VDV received a batch of upgraded 2S9-1M Nona-SM air-droppable self-propelled mortars (SPMs),” the source said, adding that the VDV “is

  • UK parliamentarians call for ‘greater ambition’ and more resources for Arctic

    The UK parliament’s defence committee has called on the United Kingdom to be more ambitious and devote greater resources to the Arctic and High North in face of a resurgent Russia. Entitled ‘On Thin Ice: UK Defence in the Arctic’, the 15 August report examines increasing Russian

  • India’s CAG criticises IAF airfields upgrade

    The office of India’s Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has severely criticised what it described as the “inadequate” upgrade of a large number of Indian Air Force (IAF) airfields across the country. In a report tabled in parliament on 7 August, the CAG highlighted delays as

  • Update: Taliban launches attack on Ghazni City

    Taliban fighters launched a multi-pronged attack on the capital of Afghanistan’s eastern Ghazni Province on 10 August, killing more than 170 security forces personnel. At the time of this update, however, five days into the fighting they have failed to bring the strategically located city

  • US to provide Sri Lanka with USD39 million in military financing

    The US Department of State has announced that it will provide Sri Lanka with about USD39 million in foreign military financing, pending congressional approval. “We look forward to discussing with the government of Sri Lanka how this contribution can support our ‘Bay of Bengal

  • Kabul and ‘Resolute Support’ sign to boost telecom services

    The Afghan government and the NATO-led ‘Resolute Support’ mission signed on 11 August a memorandum of understanding (MOU) designed to enhance telecommunication services across Afghanistan. “The Afghan National Defense Security Forces [ANDSF] depend on a more reliable and secure

  • US Air Force seeks to improve student pilot learning through new initiative

    Key Points The USAF sought to decrease the time of pilot training without sacrificing learning Pilot Training Next relied heavily on simulators and other existing and emerging technologies The US Air Force (USAF) sought to decrease the time and cost of pilot training without sacrificing the depth

  • Bolivian military border control initiative develops

    Bolivian Defence Minister Javier Zabaleta announced on 7 August that the Bolivian Army will relocate 24 forward control posts and double the number of personnel assigned to the country’s Counter Smuggling Strategic Operational Command (Comando Estratégico Operacional [CEO] de Lucha contra

  • Chemring explosion kills one

    An explosion on 10 August at Chemring’s flare-manufacturing facility in Salisbury in the United Kingdom resulted in one fatality and has caused the company to suspend production at the site. Another employee was injured and received hospital treatment, the company confirmed, with the

  • Saudi takes command of CTF 150 for the first time

    A Royal Saudi Naval Forces (RSNF) officer has assumed command of Combined Task Force 150 (CTF150) for the first time, the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) announced on 9 August. Commodore Al-Shahrani officially took over from the UK Royal Navy’s Commodore Stephen Moorhouse during a ceremony at

  • Croatia negotiates F-16 deal with Israel as counterweight to Serbian MiG-29s

    The Croatian Ministry of Defence (MoD) invited the Israeli Air Force (IAF) to visit Croatia on 2-5 August as it negotiated the purchase of F-16 combat aircraft from Israel. The potential deal reflected Croatia’s growing sign of support and friendship with Israel, with the arrival of three

  • US needs national maritime strategy to sustain US-flagged commercial fleet for defence needs, GAO says

    The US Department of Transportation (DOT) should complete a national maritime strategy to sustain the US-flagged commercial cargo ships on which the Pentagon relies to ship Defense Department cargo, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has said. The DOT has drafted but not issued the national

  • Saudi tankers resume Bab al-Mandab transits

    Saudi tankers are again moving through the Bab al-Mandab strait into the Red Sea after a 10-day suspension of transits, IHS Markit maritime data has confirmed. Saudi Arabia announced that it was temporarily suspending oil shipments through the strait on 25 July after two tankers were attacked by

  • Turkey likely to withdraw from jihadist-held areas around Idlib to enable Syrian government offensive

    Key Points IHS Markit data indicates that non-state armed groups that we have classified as ‘jihadist opposition’ have been contained by Turkey and its proxies in a pocket of control around Idlib. Turkey is likely to yield to pressure from Russia, which effectively controls airspace

  • Italy donates 12 patrol boats to Libya

    The Italian Parliament approved the transfer of 12 patrol boats to Libya on 7 August. The vessels will be operated by the Libyan Coast Guard and the Ministry of Interior, and are intended to support efforts to stem the flow of illegal migrants through the Mediterranean. The boats are being donated

  • Australia re-appoints ASC for Collins-class submarine training

    The Australian Department of Defence (DoD) has re-contracted state-owned company ASC to deliver the Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN’s) Collins-class submarine training programme. Services that will be delivered in the contract include operator, maintainer, and operational training for all

  • CENTCOM sees message in Iranian naval exercise

    Iran was trying to send a message when it held a naval exercise as the United States reimposed sanctions on the Islamic Republic, according to General Joseph Votel, the commander of US Central Command (CENTCOM). CENTCOM noted apparent preparations for the exercise on 1 August, when it stated it was

  • Ecuadorian MND outlines acquisition plans

    The Ecuadorian Ministry of National Defense (MND) outlined its strategy to strengthen the country’s armed forces on 2 August, with its goals including the acquisition of new platforms and the repair and modernisation of existing ones. The objective for the army is to acquire light

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