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EUROPE

28 Dec 10. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. A Corporal from 216 (Parachute) Signal Squadron was killed by an improvised explosive device (IED) in the Bowri Desert on 21 Dec 10. A Warrant Officer from The Royal Logistic Corps was killed by an IED in the Lashkar Gah District on 28 Dec 10. UK deaths since the start of Operations on 7 Oct 01 thus rose to 348, of whom 307 were killed as a result of hostile action. (MoD, 28 Dec 10.)
From 1 Jan 06 to 30 Nov 10, 1,553 personnel were Wounded in Action and 4,080 were aeromedically evacuated. From 16 to 30 Nov 10 the figures were 17 and 65. (DASA, 15 Dec 10.)
The strength of the Afghan National Army currently stands at around 144,000 and of the Afghan National Police at around 116,000….By the end of 2014 they will be able to take the lead for security across their Country. (Ministerial Answer (MA), 13 Dec 10.)
2nd Bn The Parachute Regiment led an Operation to establish Government control in the Tor Ghai settlement. (MoD, 14 Dec 10.)
The Foreign Secretary announced publication of the first progress report on developments in Afghanistan. The report focuses on key developments during November 2010. (Ministerial Statement (MS), 14 Dec 10.)
In response to a Sunday Times article, the MoD stated “There are no plans to send Challenger 2 tanks to Afghanistan.”. (MoD, 20 Dec 10.)
A key part of Highway One between central Helmand and Kandahar was secured in order to ensure freedom of movement. (MS, 20 Dec 10.)
The Chief of the General Staff paid a pre-Christmas visit to British troops serving in Helmand Province.(MoD, 24 Dec 10.)
Comment: The progress report announced by the Foreign Secretary is published on the FCO website (www.fco.gov.uk). The (US) White House published (16 Dec 10) an ‘Overview of the Afghanistan and Pakistan Annual Review’, which was welcomed by the NATO Secretary General and by the UK’s Prime Minister. Agency reports claimed that at least 21 people were killed in two US ‘drone’ attacks on Mir Ali, Pakistan, on27 Dec 10. Most of the dead were said to be Pakistanis. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 11/01, 3 Jan 11)

27 Dec 10. The influential Serbian daily Politika on Monday cited legal documents identifying Prime Minister Sali Berisha of Albania as one of the key arms traffickers during the 1998-99 war in Kosovo.”Sali Berisha was one of the main arms traffickers during the Kosovo conflict. His name is mentioned by four witnesses in documents from the (Serbian) war crimes prosecutor,” Politika, a pro-government daily, said on its frontpage. In Tirana, Berisha dismissed the claims as “racist slander.” “Claims by Politika, a mouthpiece of Serb ultranationalists and the advocate of the Serb genocide in Bosnia and Kosovo ,are nothing but racist slander, “Berisha told AFP. He linked Politika’s report to an “anti-Albanian hysteria, led by (Council of Europe special rapporteur) Dick Marty, a racist who, without any proof, is trying to do everything to soil the Albanians’ war in Kosovo.” “The way these accusations are presented, they can be only to my honour,” Berisha said. Politika says the file, number 33-08, of the war crimes prose

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