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02 Oct 07. Iraq: OP TELIC. Some 200 members of The King’s Royal Hussars returned to their barracks in Tidworth on 1 Oct 07, following five months in Iraq. The Regiment had conducted anti-smuggling Operations on the Iraq/Iran border and ‘strike and detain’ Operations in Basrah City. (MoD, 2 Oct 07.)
During his first visit to Iraq (2 Oct 07) as Prime Minister, Mr Brown said that Basrah Province could be handed over to full Iraqi control within the next two months. The Prime Minister also forecast a reduction of 1,000 UK troops to 4,500 serving on OP TELIC. (MoD, 2 Oct 07.)
Personnel from 34 Squadron, RAF Regiment, completed a project bringing mains water to a village near Basrah City. (MoD, 3 Oct 07.)
Comment: The Prime Minister is expected to expand on his plans for OP TELIC during a Statement to the House of Commons on Mon 8 Oct 07. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0739, 08 Oct 07)

01 Oct 07. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. A Major from 1st Bn The Royal Gurkha Rifles was killed in Southern Afghanistan when his vehicle was caught in an explosion on 4 Oct 07. UK deaths since the start of Operations in October 2001 thus rose to 82, of whom 54 have been classified as Killed in Action and three as Died of Wounds sustained in action. (MoD, 5 Oct 07.)
“Our commitment to Afghanistan is for the long term. The Prime Minister has made that clear.” (MoD, 1 Oct 07.)
“Any suggestion that we are re-posturing because we need to send more troops to Afghanistan [is] untrue.” (MoD, 1 Oct 07.)
Comment: Corporal Bill Apiata, the first New Zealander to be awarded the Victoria Cross since World War II met the Defence Secretary on 2 Oct 07. Corporal Apiata is serving with the NZ Special Air Service
and was awarded the VC “for saving the life of a critically injured soldier during an intense fire fight in Afghanistan in 2004”.(Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0739, 08 Oct 07)

03 Oct 07. Astute Programme: First of Class Firing Trials. BAE Systems reported (3 Oct 07) that the First of the new Class of attack submarine (SSN), ASTUTE, had successfully carried out her initial firing trials. The boat had discharged a total of 10 dummy Spearfish torpedoes and Tomahawk missiles through the six tubes in her bow.
Comment: ASTUTE was rolled out on 8 Jun 07 and BAE Systems expects her to enter service in January 2009. Three more of the Class (AMBUSH, ARTFUL & AUDACIOUS) are in build at BAE Systems’ yard in
Barrow-in-Furness. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0739, 08 Oct 07)

03 Oct 07. Senior NATO officials say incompatible C2 endangers ISAF . NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan suffers a fatal lack of interoperable command-and-control (C2) equipment and intelligence-sharing networks, according to senior NATO commanders. The issues are especially severe in southern Afghanistan’s Kandahar district and others where the Taliban’s insurgency movement is strongest, and where fatalities involving ISAF soldiers could otherwise have been avoided or minimised, they stated. (Source: Jane’s)

11 Oct 07. UK manufacturers’ domestic sales reached their highest level on record in the third quarter of this year, with more companies working at full capacity than for the last decade, a survey showed on Thursday. The British Chamber of Commerce said the balance of manufacturers reporting rising orders fell, from 29 to 26 per cent, but was still at historically high levels. Activity in the service sector slowed, especially among larger companies, but remained above the long-run average. Recruitment and investment intentions remained strong, especially in the manufacturing sector where the balance of companies expecting to raise prices also increased from 24 to 32 per cent. Pricing intentions were unchanged in the services sector. Economists said that while activity was slowing, evidence of pricing pressures, in line with earlier surveys, would give the Bank of England ammunition to de

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