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25 Jan 11. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. A Private from 2nd Bn The Parachute Regiment was killed by an improvised explosive device (IED) in the North of the Nahr-e-Saraj District on 25 Jan 11. UK deaths since the start of Operations on 7 Oct 01 thus rose to 350, of whom 309 were killed as a result of hostile action. (MoD, 25 Jan 11.)
From 1 Jan 06 to 15 Jan 11, 1,598 personnel were Wounded in Action and 4,225 were aeromedically evacuated. From 1 to 15 Jan 11 the figures were 18 and 54. (DASA, 28 Jan 11.)
Soldiers from 1st Bn The Royal Irish Regiment have helped to transform Chah-e Mirza from an insurgent safe haven into a peaceful settlement. (MoD, 24 Jan 11.)
Soldiers from 3rd Bn The Parachute Regiment returned to Naqilabad Kalay in order to recruit Police Officers from the town. (MoD, 26 Jan 11.)
During 2010 there were an estimated 804 IED attacks within the Task Force Helmand area of responsibility. (Written Answer (WA), 27 Jan 11.)
Afghan National Police, supported by members of 5th Bn The Royal Regiment of Scotland, cleared the contested area of Pupalzay Kalay. (MoD, 28 Jan 11.)
Comment: The Foreign Secretary said (26 Jan 11) that he welcomed the inauguration of the Afghan Parliament: “Britain will support the new Parliament as it works to strengthen Afghan institutions, meets the needs of Afghan constituents and holds the executive to account.”. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 11/05, 31 Jan 11)
26 Jan 11. BBC World Service: Closures. The Foreign Secretary announced (26 Jan 11) a 16% cut in the World Service budget. As a result, the BBC Trust proposes to close five language services: Albanian, Macedonian, Serbian, Portuguese for Africa and English for the Caribbean. Some three and a half million people currently listen to the services to be closed, from a total World Service audience of 180 million.
Comment: The BBC’s Global News Director described the cuts as “painful”. All the proposed changes could result in up to 433 jobs being lost from a total staff of 2,400. A former Managing Director of the World Service, Sir John Tusa, predicted that the cuts would weaken the UK’s global reach and called them “bad, bad, bad”.(Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 11/05, 31 Jan 11)
27 Jan 11. General Sir David Richards, the chief of defence staff, has stood by the government’s decision to scrap the £4bn fleet of new RAF Nimrods, following a claim by leading military figures that it will create a “massive gap” in British security. In a letter in Thursday’s Daily Telegraph, senior figures from all three services, including one of General Richards’ predecessors as CDS, say the decision to scrap the Nimrod MR4 aircraft is “perverse.” They warn that national security will be dangerously exposed without the aircraft, which would have continued to provide long-range reconnaissance and surveillance, and protect the Royal Navy’s Trident submarines.
“Vulnerability of sea lanes, unpredictable overseas crises and traditional surface and submarine opposition will continue to demand versatile responsive aircraft,” the Telegraph letter states.
“Nimrod would have continued to provi