NEWS IN BRIEF
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24 Jan 10. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. A Lance Corporal from 3rd Bn The Rifles died from wounds received as a result of an explosion near Sangin on 24 Jan 10. UK deaths since the start of Operations on 7 Oct 01 thus rose to 251, of whom 218 were killed as a result of hostile action. (MoD, 24 Jan 10.)
All military personnel deployed ‘outside the wire’ in Afghanistan are issued with a morphine auto injector. (Ministerial Answer (MA), 25 Jan 10.)
The Commander, Regional Command South described forthcoming Operations in a BBC interview. (25 Jan 10.)
Over 300 soldiers from 1st Bn The Royal Welsh targeted a Taliban stronghold in a four-day Operation.
(MoD, 26 Jan 10.)
British troops are among others from NATO helping to train Afghan National Army soldiers at the Kabul Military Training Centre. (MoD, 27 Jan 10.)
The greatest victims of IED (improvised explosive devices) are Afghan civilians, who suffer four times as many casualties from these devices as International Forces. (ISAF, 30 Jan 10.)
Comment: The Final Communiqué from the London Conference (28 Jan 10) drew attention to a further Conference to be hosted by the Afghan Government in Kabul later this year. The Kabul Conference is to be preceded by a ‘Grand Peace Jirga’.
The Defence Secretary is due to give evidence about Afghanistan to the Defence Committee on Tue 9 Feb 10 at 10.45hrs. The provisional venue is Committee Room 16 in the Palace of Westminster (although the room may change). (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 10/05, 01 Feb 10)
01 Feb 10. French Defence Minister Herve Morin expressed hope Feb. 1 that the governments buying Airbus’ over-budget A400M military plane could reach a deal on the project’s huge cost overruns this week. Morin said the matter could be settled when he holds talks with his counterparts
from the seven client governments at a NATO meeting Feb. 4-5 in Istanbul. “We will meet on the margins of this NATO meeting, again with the goal today of reaching a conclusion by the end of the week,” he told reporters. Morin said a breakthrough could emerge Feb. 4 during a Franco-German defense and security council in Paris. “It is obvious that it would help us if France and Germany find a common position during the meeting [Feb. 4]. The French and the Germans are closer than they were a few weeks ago,” he said. France and Germany are the project’s biggest clients, with 50 and 60 orders, respectively. The seven client countries have held three meetings with Airbus parent EADS in recent days to seek a resolution, but no breakthrough has emerged so far on the
long-delayed project. A German representative to the talks said last week that EADS wants the governments to shell out an additional 6.4 billion euros, but clients are willing to give 2bn euros. Seven countries have ordered 180 of the aircraft for 20bn euros ($28bn) from Airbus, but the project is three years behind schedule and a reported 11bn euros over budget. Airbus has threatened to pull the plug unless the nations – Germany, France, Spain, Britain, Belgi