23 Nov 16. Autumn Statement: Military Aspects. In his Autumn Statement (23 Nov 16), the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that LIBOR (bank fines) were to provide a £20m ‘boost’ to fundraising for the Defence and National Rehabilitation Centre, in addition to
financing four projects endorsed by the MoD. The projects are:-
. A £500,000 grant to fund the unveiling of a memorial marking the contribution of those who served in
Operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. The memorial is to be installed in Victoria Embankment Gardens and is due to be unveiled in Spring 2017.
. £2,432,000 has been allocated to address the history and the future of the RAF, which will be celebrating its centenary on 1 Apr 18.
. An award of £150,000 towards sending a UK delegation to Toronto in September 2017 for the Invictus Games (for wounded veteran military personnel).
. Over £450,000 for the support of Armed Forces. families; in particular the Families Federation.
Comment: The Defence and National Rehabilitation Centre is due to become operational in 2018 as a “purpose-built, world-leading clinical rehabilitation site to offer medical services for injured members of the Forces”. The site at Stanford Hall near Loughborough was visited by the Veterans. Minister on 17 Nov 16. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 16/46, 28 Nov 16)
21 Nov 16. Iraq and Syria: OP SHADER. On 17 Nov 16 Tornados attacked a Daesh bunker in Western Iraq and a mortar position in the North as Typhoons destroyed four booby-trapped buildings North of Raqqa in Syria. On the following day Typhoons bombed a strong point and an artillery piece North of Raqqa and a weapons store in Mosul as a Reaper engaged two terrorist targets South of Mosul. On 20 Nov 16 Tornados engaged an artillery piece on the Southern edge of Mosul. (MoD, 21 Nov 16.)
The Coalition has provided more than 24,000 protective chemical masks during training for the Iraqi security forces and Peshmerga, in preparation for the Mosul offensive. (Armed Forces. Minister, 22 Nov 16.)
UK military personnel are training Iraqi Security Forces including Kurdish Peshmerga. UK Forces are also participating in a US-led Train and Equip programme to train selected members of vetted moderate Syrian opposition Forces. (Minister of State, 23 Nov 16.)
On 21 Nov 16 a Reaper engaged three Daesh targets while supporting an Iraqi advance. On the next day Typhoons and a Tornado destroyed a terrorist desert encampment in Western Iraq. On 23 Nov 16 Typhoons
attacked a machine-gun position South West of Mosul as a Reaper destroyed two mortars and an anti-tank gun. Typhoons bombed a strong point to the North of Raqqa on 24 Nov 16. (MoD, 25 Nov 16.)
Comment: RAF aircraft have continued to support the Iraqi Operation to liberate Mosul and the advance by the Syrian Democratic Forces against Raqqa. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 16/46, 28 Nov 16)
18 Nov 16. Afghanistan: Reserves Call-out. The Armed Forces. Minister said (18 Nov 16) that a new order has been made under the Reserve Forces Act 1996 to enable Reservists to be called into permanent service in support of UK Operations in Afghanistan. The order took effect from 9 Nov 16 and ceases to have effect on 8 Nov 17. The Minister also said (22 Nov 16) that the UK is not providing equipment or accommodation to the Afghan National Army (ANA). The Armed Forces continue to mentor instructors at the ANA Officers. Academy.
Comment: Under the call-out order made on 1 Nov 15, 146 Reservists were called out for Operations. The MoD anticipates a continued requirement for Reservists with the right skills and experience. (Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 16/46, 28 Nov 16)
21 Nov 16. Cyprus: OP TOSCA. The Army advised (21 Nov 16) that soldiers from 7 Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps (7 Regt, RLC) have begun training for a six-month UK peacekeeping mission in Cyprus. The 250-strong deployment will include soldiers from RLC Reserve Regiments, deploying on OP