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NEWS IN BRIEF

NEWS IN BRIEF

EUROPE

26 Mar 08. Iraq: OP TELIC. A soldier was killed during a firefight in Iraq on 26 Mar 08. UK deaths since the start of the Campaign thus rose to 176, of whom 109 have been classified as Killed in Action and 27 as Died of Wounds sustained in action. (MoD, 26 Mar 08.)
From 1 Jan 06 to 29 Feb 08, 305 personnel were categorised as Wounded in Action and 1,365 were aeromedically evacuated. (MoD, 26 Mar 08.) From 16 to 29 Feb 08, the figures were eight and 18.
There were 400 rocket attacks against the Contingency Operating Base during 2007 and 37 in 2008 up to
17 Feb 08. (Ministerial Answer (MA), 19 Mar 08.)
Three Tornado GR4 Squadrons based at RAF Lossiemouth [12, 14 & 617] are preparing to deploy on
OP TELIC. (MoD, 20 Mar 08.)
“Force levels are under constant review….” (MoD, 25 Mar 08.)
British aircraft are assisting during the ongoing Operation in Basrah but “there is no intention to involve British troops”. (MoD, 26 Mar 08.)
There were 296 reported improvised explosive device (IED) attacks in Basrah during 2007 and 24 in 2008 up to 14 Mar 08. (MA, 26 Mar 08.)
In a Written Statement (27 Mar 08), the Defence Secretary accepted that nine Iraqis had compensation claims against the MoD. During 2003/04 a minority of British troops “committed acts of abuse”. (MoD, 28 Mar 08.)
British troops have been providing the Iraqi Security Forces with logistic support during “a massive Operation”. (MoD, 28 Mar 08.)
Comment: The Government Response to the Defence Committee’s Report on the Iran hostages incident
(23 Mar 07 et seq) was published on 26 Mar 08, as HC 399 for £3:00. The Response confirms that “….formal administrative action has been taken against a number of Service personnel across a wide spectrum of ranks”. On 27 Mar 08, the Defence Secretary said that RN/RM equipment remaining with the Iranian authorities from the incidents in 2004 and 2007 was valued at about £500,000 in each case. (The values correct earlier estimates made public on 26 Apr 07.) (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0813, 31 Mar 08)

26 Mar 08. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. From 1 Jan 06 to 29 Feb 08, 339 personnel were categorised as Wounded in Action and 905 were aeromedically evacuated. (MoD, 26 Mar 08.) From 16 to 29 Feb 08, the figures were six and 25.
“The long-term goal of the NATO-led ISAF mission is to hand over responsibility for security of the country to the Government of Afghanistan and Afghan Security Forces.” (Defence Secretary, 18 Mar 08.)
The Canadian Chief of the Defence Staff presented the Canadian Forces’ Unit Commendation to the CO of
1st Bn The Royal Gurkha Rifles. (MoD, 25 Mar 08.)
The MoD has requested £1,649m from the Treasury Reserve to cover the net additional costs of Operations in Afghanistan for 2007/08. (MA, 26 Mar 08.)
Comment: The House of Commons debated the ‘Helmand Province Mission’ on 25 Mar 08 (Hansard,
Column 44WH) and the record is worth reading. An article by Adam Holloway in the 29 Mar 08 edition of ‘The Spectator’ (‘To bring peace to the Afghans, talk to the Taliban’) is also thought provoking. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 0813, 31 Mar 08)

29 Mar 08. Senior executives at BAE Systems are to be set higher targets in ethics and safety, which will make up 12 per cent of potential bonuses for 2008. Last June the defence contractor’s board appointed an independent committee, chaired by Lord Woolf, the former lord chief justice, to conduct an independent audit of its business conduct. The company has been clouded by investigations into allegations of corruption around the 20-year-old Al Yamamah arms deal with Saudi Arabia. Chief executive Mike Turner, who retires in August, earned £2.63m last year, including a performance-related bonus of £1.37m. (Source: FT.com)

04 Apr 08. The first dozen of the powerful Mobility Installation Weapons Mounted Installation Kit (MWMIK) vehicles have been delivered ahead of their planned deployment to Afghanistan. The vehicles have bee

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