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16 Dec 15. Turkey To Build Military Base in Qatar.
Turkey will build a military base in Qatar, its staunchest regional ally, officials said.
The move comes a year after the two countries signed a military cooperation agreement. The treaty was ratified by the Turkish parliament in June.
Turkish diplomats dealing with security matters said that the military base in Qatar will help the two countries to counter common security threats and enemies.
Turkey and Qatar, whose majority of Muslims are Sunni, spearhead efforts for the ousting of Syrian President Bashar Assad, who is supported by Shiite administrations in Iran and Afghanistan, as well as Russia.
The diplomats said that about 3,000 Turkish troops would be stationed at the base in Qatar. The troops will be supported by aerial and naval assets and their operations would be augmented by special forces units.
The multipurpose base also will serve as a military training camp.
Qatar is home to the largest U.S. air base in the Middle East, Al Udeid. There are around 10,000 U.S. troops there. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/Defense News)
15 Dec 15. UK Royal Navy receives third Astute-class submarine, the Artful. The UK Royal Navy has received the third of the new Astute-class attack submarines, Artful, which will form a vital part of the country’s security for decades to come. The submarine was previously owned by the UK Ministry of Defence’s body responsible for procuring and supporting equipment for the armed forces, Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S).
UK Defence Minister Philip Dunne said: “The handover of Artful to the Royal Navy is another major step in the Astute Class submarine programme, which continues to gather pace. These attack submarines will provide the Royal Navy with the most technologically advanced submarine Britain has ever sent to sea, and will be a vital part of UK security for decades to come.
“They are being funded by our growing defence budget and our £178bn investment in equipment, which is delivering the very best possible kit to our Armed Forces.”
Artful will be commissioned in March 2016 and will be added to the fleet alongside other navy units in HM Naval Base Clyde.
DE&S Submarines Acquisition director rear admiral Mike Wareham said: “The handover of Artful to the Royal Navy is a proud moment for DE&S, reflecting a key milestone and a significant achievement in the Astute programme.
“It follows a number of sea trials which have successfully demonstrated the submarine’s capability and means she can now begin to prepare for operations with the Royal Navy.”
BAE Systems Marine Services (BAES(MS)) was contracted to build seven Astute-class submarines for the Royal Navy, which will progressively replace the Trafalgar-class submarines.
HMS Astute and HMS Ambush have already been accepted by Navy Command, while the next two submarines, Audacious and Anson, are currently being built in Barrow, with Agamemnon and an unnamed vessel to follow. (Source: naval-technology.com)
10 Dec 15. Russia strengthens Black Sea Fleet patrol force. Key Points:
• Russia deploys two Buyan-M patrol vessels to Black Sea Fleet
• The navy continues to take steps to bolster its Black Sea strategic presence
The Russian Navy is taking another step in strategic plans to strengthen its Black Sea Fleet (BSF) with the deployment of two Buyan-M patrol ships.
The missile-capable vessels Sepukhov and Zeleni Dol, the fourth and fifth Project 21631 platforms, are the first two of the type to be deployed with the BSF. They are to be inducted into the fleet in a ceremony on 12 December at the Sevastopol naval base in Crimea. The cere