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31 Jan 12. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. From 1 Jan 06 to 15 Jan 12, 1,855 personnel were Wounded in Action and 5,358 were aeromedically evacuated. (DASA, 31 Jan 12.) From 1 to 15 Jan 12 the figures were one and 39.
The Personnel Minister confirmed that the daily Operational Allowance would continue to be paid to Service personnel serving in Afghanistan. (Written Answer (WA), 30 Jan 12.)
Soldiers from 2nd Bn The Rifles and their Afghan Army colleagues discovered two caches of bomb-making equipment and ammunition. (Media Ops, 31 Jan 12.)
Soldiers from 1st Bn The Yorkshire Regiment with Afghan National Security Forces engaged insurgents in the Nahr-e Saraj District. (MoD, 31 Jan 12.)
Both the Afghan National Army (ANA) and the Afghan National Police (ANP) are on track to reach their maximum target numbers in October 2012. (WA, 31 Jan 12.)
RAF personnel conducted missions across South Afghanistan between 22 and 28 Jan 12. (MoD, 3 Feb 12.)
Comment: The 13th Progress Report on Developments in Afghanistan was published on 31 Jan 12. The Report is published on the FCO website (www.fco.gov.uk).
Considerable media speculation followed comments made by the US Defence Secretary and the French President. However, both NATO and the MoD stressed (3 Feb 12) that there has been no change to the strategy agreed by ISAF nations in 2010. The UK Defence Secretary said: “….we will remain there [in Afghanistan] in a combat support role….until the end of 2014.”.
01 Feb 12. Science and Technology: White Paper Published. A White Paper (i.e. Government policy document) was published (1 Feb 12) on National Security Through Technology, setting out how the Government intends to provide the best equipment for the Armed Forces and the Security Services. The White Paper is divided between ‘UK Defence and Security Procurement’ and ‘The UK Defence and Security Industry’.
Comment: The White Paper is published as Command 8278 for £16:00. A companion booklet describing the discussions leading up to the White Paper (‘A Consultation Paper’) is published as Command 8277 for £8:75.
A Written Ministerial Statement (‘National Security Through Technology’) is published in Hansard for 1 Feb 12. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 12/06, 06 Feb 12)
01 Feb 12. New Zealand: Ministerial Visit. The Defence Secretary welcomed the New Zealand Minister of Defence to London (1 Feb 12). Topics of mutual interest are said to have been discussed, “including Operations in Afghanistan and potential areas of
co-operation and collaboration between the two Countries”.
Comment: The meeting was part of a two-day visit by the New Zealand Minister of Defence who was accompanied by, amongst others, the Chief of the New Zealand Defence Force. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 12/06, 06 Feb 12)
31 Jan 12. Army Transformation: Chief of the General Staff (CGS) Speech. The CGS spoke on Transforming the Army at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS – 31 Jan 12). CGS drew attention to a conference on the Reserves which is to be held in the MoD on 20 Feb 12, entitled Whither Warfare. CGS expected that he would soon be in a position to make recommendations to the Defence Secretary about the future Army structure, leading to “a decision sometime in the Spring”.
Comment: An excellent speech, outlining the problems facing the Army. As the General said by way of introduction: “The Army is confronting some very significant challenges in the coming years….”.(Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 12/06, 06 Feb 12) (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 12/06, 06 Feb 12)
31 Jan 12. European Defence Agency (EDA) CEO Claude-France Arnould said here Jan. 31 at the agency’s annual conference that creating an EU army would have to be “a political decision” and that “pooling and sharing