NEWS IN BRIEF
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01 May 09. Iraq: OP TELIC. From 1 Jan 06 to 15 Apr 09, 315 personnel were categorised as Wounded in Action and 1,880 were aeromedically evacuated. (MoD, 1 May 09.) From 1 to 15 Apr 09 the figures were nil and 19.
The Prime Ministers of Iraq and the United Kingdom announced the ending of Operations by the British in Iraq from 30 Apr 09. A memorial service was held to commemorate the deaths of 178 UK Service personnel, one UK Civil Servant, 46 other Coalition Forces and nine contractors who were killed in the Divisional Area of Operations. The Defence Secretary attended the various ceremonies at the Contingency Operating Base near Basrah. (MoD, 30 Apr 09.)
Comment: In a ‘Daily Telegraph’ article (2 May 09), John Keegan compares the Army’s withdrawal from Iraq with the earlier withdrawal from Malaya. While Malaya/Malaysia was left behind as a stable and prosperous democracy, “British involvement in Iraq has had less happy results”.
01 May 09. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. A Lance Sergeant from 1st Bn Welsh Guards was killed by an explosion while on patrol near Keenan on 28 Apr 09. UK deaths since the start of Operations in October 2001 thus rose to 153, of whom 124 were killed as a result of hostile action. (MoD, 28 Apr 09.)
From 1 Jan 06 to 15 Apr 09, 619 personnel were categorised as Wounded in Action and 1,899 were aeromedically evacuated. (MoD, 1 May 09.) From 1 to 15 Apr 09 the figures were four and 31.
The MoD does not currently contract with any private security company in (either Iraq or) Afghanistan. (Ministerial Answer, 24 Apr 09.)
The Prime Minister visited Camp Bastion on 27 Apr 09 and then Kabul where he held talks with the Afghan President. (MoD, 27 Apr 09.)
The last members of 45 Commando returned to Scotland on 24 Apr 09. The 1,200-strong Battle Group based on 45 Commando lost 12 men Killed in Action during the deployment. (MoD, 27 Apr 09.)
The Prime Minister announced (29 Apr 09) an increase in troop numbers from 8,300 to 9,000 for the duration of the Afghan elections. The number is planned to revert to 8,300 in 2010. The Defence Secretary added, in a Written Statement, that HQ 6 (UK) Division is to command Regional Command (South) from November 2009 to November 2010. (Hansard, 29 Apr 09.)
Comment: 42 countries continue to contribute to the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), although adjustments have been made to the numbers from: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Germany, Jordan, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, Turkey and the US.
AFGHANISTAN: INTERNATIONAL SECURITY ASSISTANCE FORCE (ISAF)
TROOP CONTRIBUTING NATIONS (TCN) AS AT 3 APR 09
United States 26,215
United Kingdom 8,300
New Zealand 150