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12 Jun 10. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. UK deaths since the start of Operations on 7 Oct 01 have risen to 299, of whom 265 were killed as a result of hostile action. As confirmed by the MoD (18 Jun 10), the recent fatalities are:-
* A Lance Corporal from 1st Bn The Mercian Regiment was killed in an explosion near Check Point Kingshill on 12 Jun 10.
* A Marine from 40 Commando died on 14 Jun 10 as a result of a gunshot wound suffered in Sangin on the previous day.
* A Corporal and a Kingsman (Private) from 1st Bn The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment were killed in separate fire-fights in the Nad ‘Ali District on 15 Jun 10.
* A soldier from The Royal Dragoon Guards was killed in an explosion in the Nahr-e Saraj District
on 18 Jun 10.
From 1 Jan 06 to 31 May 10, 1,282 personnel were Wounded in Action and 3,449 were aeromedically evacuated. (MoD, 17 Jun 10.) From 16 to 31 May 10 the figures were 49 and 63. [A Written Answer (14 Jun 10) revealed that 376 UK personnel sustained Very Serious/Serious Injuries between 7 Oct 01 and 15 May 10.]
It was confirmed that the tax-free Operational Allowance has been increased from £14:51 per day to £29:02, with effect from 6 May 10. The cost of the increase is £57m per year. (Defence Secretary, 14 & 17 Jun 10.)
Reaper is the UK’s only armed remotely piloted air system (RPAS). (Defence Secretary, 14 Jun 10.)
Some 27,000 personnel are serving in the newly-established Regional Command (South West) [RC(SW)] while 30,000 continue to operate in Regional Command (South) [RC(S)]. (MoD, 14 Jun 10.)
The Armed Forces’ Minister, accompanied by the First Sea Lord, visited UK personnel serving in Helmand Province. (MoD, 16 Jun 10.)
Men of 40 Commando, Royal Marines, have built a new Police Training Centre inside Forward Operating
Base Jackson. (MoD, 16 Jun 10.)
Comment: The Prime Minister made a Statement to the House of Commons (14 Jun 10, Hansard Column 603 et seq). There are to be regular updates on Afghanistan, with quarterly Statements by the Foreign or Defence Secretaries together with monthly accounts of progress.
As at 7 Jun 10, ISAF numbers increased by almost 17,000. Reflecting the military ‘surge’, US numbers were up by 16,000. The only other increase of note was by Georgia (up 750 to 925).
A UN Security Council Report (16 Jun 10) on Afghanistan noted that the overall security situation has not improved in recent months. (UN, 18 Jun 10.) (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 09/24, 21 June 09)
16 Jun 10. Sweden: Defence Minister’s Visit.The MoD advised (16 Jun 10) that the Defence Secretary has welcomed his Swedish counterpart to the UK. Top of the agenda for discussion was said to be Afghanistan. The Ministers also discussed Swedish Defence reforms, the UK’s Strategic Defence and Security Review, the ‘High North’ and counter-piracy (OP ATALANTA).
Comment: The Swedish Parliament formally abolished conscription on 19 May 10. From 1 Jul 10, recruiting is to be based on a voluntary application system. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 09/24, 21 June 09)
14 Jun 10. Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR): Defence Secretary Outl