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06 May 15. Bolivia announces requirement for 40,000 new assault rifles. Bolivian armed forces require 40,000 new assault rifles, adding to the country’s ongoing military modernisation programme that includes a new air surveillance radar system and up to 20 new light combat aircraft, Minister of Defence Reymi Ferreira has announced. Of these rifles, 30,000 will be assigned to operational units and 10,000 will be kept in reserve. According to Ferreira, a new-generation assault rifle is the Ministry of Defence’s second-highest priority, as the current infantry’s inventory has become obsolete. Bolivian forces use a wide variety of rifles, including the 7.62 mm Chinese Type 56, SIG 542, and FN FAL acquired in different batches from Argentinian and Brazilian production lines. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
06 May 15. Indian Army Air Defence inducts Akash missile system. The Indian Army Air Defence Corps has formally inducted the indigenously built Akash supersonic missile during a ceremony at the Manekshaw Centre in Delhi, India. The induction comes more than three decades after the project was initiated in the mid-1980s, and is expected to boost the all round capability enhancement and operational effectiveness of the army to meet all the contemporary and emerging challenges of negating the enemy’s air threat. Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation and Bharat Electronic Limited as part of the integrated guided missile development programme, the Akash missile is an all-weather surface-to-air missile system capable of engaging aerial threats up to a distance of 25km. Equipped with a launcher, control centre, multi-function fire control radar and supporting ground equipment, the 5.78m-long missile can destroy manoeuvring targets, such as unmanned aerial vehicles, fighter aircraft, cruise missiles, and other ballistic missiles launched from helicopters. Indian Army chief general Dalbir Singh said: “The capability that we have with this system will ensure that it takes care of the vulnerability of our assets.
“Akash is a step towards self-realisation of indigenisation.”
Singh also stated that the army was in the process of reinventing the command and control and battlefield management system of the army Air Defence.
Unnamed Indian defence sources claimed that the first full regiment is scheduled to be complete between June and July, while the second will enter service with the army by end of 2016.
Capable of reaching speeds of 2.5Ma, the 96% indigenous surface-to-air supersonic missile has already been inducted by the Indian Air Force in March 2012. (Source: army-technology.com)
04 May 15. Brazil set to procure BAE Systems Bofors 40mm weapons. The Brazilian Navy’s Weapon Systems Directorate (DSAM) is finalising negotiations with BAE Systems Bofors to procure five of the company’s 40mm Mk 4 naval weapon systems, a source told IHS Jane’s. The systems will arm the five Macaé-class patrol ships(Maracanã, Mangaratiba, Miramar , Magé , and Maragogipe ) that Brazilian shipbuilder Estaleiro Ilha (EISA) is building for the navy. The fleet is scheduled for delivery starting in December to complement Macaé (P 70) and Macau (P 71) vessels built by Indústria Naval do Ceará (INACE). The ships are based on the Vigilante 400 CL 54 design from French Constructions Mécaniques de Normandie. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
30 Apr 15. Indian carrier Vikramaditya in short refit, being fitted with close-in weapon systems. Key Points:
* India’s Vikramaditya is undergoing a short refit
* Work has provided the opportunity to install a CIWS capability
The Indian Navy’s 46,000-tonne Russian-built aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya is undergoing a short refit at the Naval Ship Repair Yard in Karwar, where it is homeported. In addition to platform and equipment maintenance, the refit period w