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NEWS IN BRIEF

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17 Nov 11. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. A Lance Corporal from 2nd Bn The Rifles was killed by an improvised explosive device while on patrol in
Nahr-e Saraj on 16 Nov 11. A Lieutenant and a Lance Corporal from 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards
were killed when their vehicle struck an improvised explosive device in Nahr-e Saraj on 17 Nov 11. UK
deaths since the start of Operations on 7 Oct 01 thus rose to 388, of whom 344 were killed as a result of hostile action. (MoD, 17 Nov 11.)
From 1 Jan 06 to 31 Oct 11, 1,817 personnel were Wounded in Action and 5,168 were aeromedically evacuated. (DASA, 15 Nov 11.) From 16 to 31 Oct 11 the figures were nine and 55.
31 Squadron RAF completed a four-month tour flying Tornado GR4 for over 1,800 hours in support of NATO missions. 31 Squadron handed over to 12 (B) Squadron at Kandahar. (Joint Media Ops, 13 Nov 11.)
The first Foxhound lightweight protected patrol vehicles are expected to be delivered for training in the UK by the end of 2011 and to be available for Operations from Spring 2012. (Written Answer (WA) 14 Nov 11.)
Some 1,000 Reservists are currently called out and serving, of whom 550 are deployed in Afghanistan. (Ministerial Statement, 14 Nov 11.)
Pelvic protection against blast is being well received by the Armed Forces and is now being emulated by the Americans. (Oral Answer (OA), 14 Nov 11.)
In the 2010/11 financial year, 1,670 UK Service personnel who had deployed to Afghanistan were assessed as being in need of mental health care. (WA, 15 Nov 11.)
1st Bn The Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment is currently heading up the Police Mentoring and Advisory Group training centre in Lashkar Gah, along with Officers from the Royal Military Police and the MoD Police. (MoD, 18 Nov 11.)
Comment: The Defence Secretary confirmed (14 Nov 11) that the UK is to take the lead role in the Afghan National Officer Training Academy, to be established outside Kabul. The MoD repeated (17 Nov 11) that British troops will not be in Afghanistan in significant numbers or in a combat role by the end of 2014. No decisions have yet been made about the UK’s residual presence, but it will be “hundreds rather than thousands”.

14 Nov 11. Libya: OP ELLAMY (19 Mar – 31 Oct 11). The MoD is calculating a new estimate of the cost of Operations in Libya. The revised figures are expected to be made public “in early December”. (OA, 14 Nov 11.) Seeking financial reimbursement [from the Libyan Government] is not a current priority. (OA, 14 Nov 11.)
Because of the UK’s basing rights, the unavailability of an aircraft carrier has had no significant effect on the UK’s participation in military Operations over Libya. (OA, 14 Nov 11.)
At its peak, some 2,300 British Service personnel were deployed on OP ELLAMY. (WA, 14 Nov 11.)
Military assets at Gioia del Colle Air Base are being returned to the UK. (RAF, 15 Nov 11.)
HMS BANGOR is returning to the Clyde after 120 days at sea in the Mediterranean. (RN, 17 Nov 11.)
Comment: The FCO announced (17 Nov 11) that The Hon Dominic Asquith CMG has been appointed as HM Ambassador to Libya in succession to Sir John Jenkins KCMG. Mr Asquith has previously served as HM Ambassador to Iraq and to Egypt. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 11/45, 21 Nov 11)

17 Nov 11. Tornado GR4 Aircraft: Resumption of Flying. The MoD advised (17 Nov 11) that “the resumption of all Tornado GR4 flying operations” has been authorised. The temporary suspension of flying for Hawk T1, Hawk T2 and Tucano remains in place.
Comment: Following the fatal accident at RAF Scampton on 8 Nov 11 all aircraft fitted with the Martin-Baker Mk10 ejection seat were grounded. An exception was made for the Tornado GR4 deployed to Afghanistan. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 11/45, 21 Nov 11)

16 Nov 11. Harrier Aircraft

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