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NEWS IN BRIEF

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20 Jun 13. Afghanistan: OP HERRICK. RAF personnel deployed to 904 Expeditionary Air Wing’s Tornado Detachment provide Ground Alert Close Air Support (GCAS) to coalition troops across Afghanistan. GCAS is a permanent duty shared between the Belgian Air Force F-16 detachment and the Tornado GR4s, both based at Kandahar Airfield. (RAF, 20 Jun 13.)
“Our Forces are acutely aware of the need to use proportionate and appropriate force….It is for commanders and personnel on the ground to determine what force is proportionate and appropriate.” (MoD, 24 Jun 13.)
As part of the UK withdrawal plans, the base in Lashkar Gah is due to be closed in 2014. Equipment will only be redeployed from Afghanistan once Operational Commanders are content that it is no longer required.(Written
Answer (WA), 26 Jun 13.)
HQ moving costs from Lashkar Gah to Camp Bastion are estimated to be £1.9m. (WA, 27 Jun 13.)
During a visit to Afghanistan, the Prime Minister announced almost £3.8m of funding for charities that support Armed Forces personnel and their families. (MoD, 29 Jun 13.)
Comment: The Foreign Secretary informed the House of Commons of developments in Afghanistan, in a Progress Report. (Written Statement, 27 Jun 13.) UK Force levels are expected to reduce to around 5,200 by the end of 2013 “in line with security transition and progress on the ground”. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 13/26, 01 Jul 13)

26 Jun 13. Spending Round 2013: Defence Aspects. In his Spending Review speech (26 Jun 13), the Chancellor of the Exchequer said: “The Defence resource budget will be maintained in cash terms at £24bn, while the equipment budget will be £14bn and will grow by 1% in real terms thereafter.” Figures released in Spending Round 2013 show the MoD Departmental Expenditure Limits (DEL), which are also expressed as a percentage of Total Managed Expenditure (TME) in the Table below:-
MoD Budget Allocations
£m
2014/15 2015/16
Resource DEL 23,900 23,900
Capital DEL 8,700 8,700
Total DEL 32,600 32,600
%TME 4.5% 4.4%
Spending Round 2013 includes Departmental Summaries, with the MoD’s starting on page 43. An estimated £2,000m of military equipment is to be recovered from Afghanistan “for potential reuse in future military
Operations”, which includes some 1,000 protected mobility vehicles.
Comment: The above Table can be compared to a similar illustration of Budget 2013. (as recorded in DNA 13/13 of 25 Mar 13). „Spending Round 2013. is available as Command 8639 for £45:00, with the above figures coming from pages 10, 11 & 18. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 13/26, 01 Jul 13)

22 Jun 13. Syria: Friends Issue Communiqué. At a meeting of the Friends of Syria Core Group in Doha (22 Jun 13) it was agreed: “To provide urgently all the necessary materiel and equipment to the opposition on the ground, each country in its own way, in order to enable them to counter brutal attacks by the regime and its allies and protect the Syrian people.”.
Comment: The Foreign Secretary confirmed on 24 Jun 13 that there has been no decision to send weapons to Syria and, should there be such a decision, Parliament would have an opportunity “to have a say in the matter”. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 13/26, 01 Jul 13)

01 Jul 13. Croatia: Joining the European Union. Croatia becomes the 28th Member State of the European Union on 1 Jul 13. In the words of NATO’s Secretary General: “Croatia is a valued NATO ally and a role model of successful Euro-Atlant

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