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10 Apr 19. Australian Government’s Defence Export Controls Schedules 2019 Outreach Program. The Australian Government’s Defense Export Controls (DEC) summa get another round of outreach events for 2019. DEC aims its outreach events at industry and research institutions that are involved in the export, supply, publication or other movement of military and dual-use goods and technology. The goal is to raise awareness of export control law by looking at what is required of exporters, what to expect when applying, and the export landscape. This year, DEC will be visiting the following cities:
- Melbourne 1-2 May
- Sydney 11 June
- Adelaide 22 July
- Darwin 24 July (TBC)
- Brisbane 24 September
- Perth 3 October (TBC)
DEC will post dates, registration details, outline of each city program on its website the coming months. (Source: glstrade.com)
09 Apr 19. India Supreme Court to hear Dassault jet deal in setback for Modi. India’s Supreme Court said on Wednesday it will hear a request for an investigation into a $8.7bn fighter jet deal with France’s Dassault Aviation, in a setback for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government. As India heads into a general election on Thursday, the court agreed to examine new evidence published by newspapers after it rejected the petitions last December. The published material was privileged defense documents, the government says.
“Preliminary objections of the Centre are dismissed,” said the court, led by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, referring to the federal government, adding that it would set a date for further hearings.
Modi, facing a tightening election, has vehemently denied opposition allegations of wrongdoing in the purchase of 36 Rafale planes and the government had asked the court to reject the petitions, citing national security.
The arms deal has been an election issue with Modi’s chief rival, Rahul Gandhi, saying it exposed the claims of his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government’s assertions of running a clean administration.
Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said Wednesday’s decision was not a setback for the government and the court had only agreed to consider new evidence.
“We are very sure that the review petition in the light of these facts would not be considered,” he said, adding it would probably be dismissed.
Two former ministers of Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and an activist lawyer seeking the investigation argued that the deal’s escalating price should be investigated after documents relating to some aspects were published by the Hindu newspaper.
The government told the court national security was at stake and the leak of the documents infringed the Official Secrets Act, a law dating to the colonial era.
A spokesman for Congress, Sanjay Jha, said, “The attempt by the Modi government to stonewall the Rafale scam probe has been scuttled by the Supreme Court.” (Source: Defense News Early Bird/Reuters)
10 Apr 19. Wreckage confirmed to be crashed Japanese F-35 fighter, pilot still missing. Search and rescue teams found wreckage from a Japanese F-35 stealth fighter that crashed over the Pacific Ocean close to northern Japan, but the pilot remains missing, authorities said on Wednesday. The aircraft, less than one-year-old, was the first F-35 to be assembled in Japan and was only in the air for 28 minutes on Tuesday, a defence official said.
It is only the second F-35 to crash in the two-decades it has been flying. The advanced, single-seat jet was flying about 135 km (84 miles) east of the Misawa air base in Aomori Prefecture at about 7:27 p.m. (1027 GMT) on Tuesday when it disappeared from radar, the Air Self Defence Force said.
“We recovered the wreckage and determined it was from the F-35,” a spokesman for the Air Self Defence Force (ASDF) said, adding that the pilot of the aircraft was still missing.
The aircraft was at the front of a group of four planes out for training manoeuvres when it sent an “aborting practice” signal and then disappeared from the radar, Defence Minister Takeshi Iwaya told reporters.
“We’ll need to cooperate with the U.S. forces and I believe arrangements are being made for this,” Iwaya said, adding the priority was on determining the cause of the accident.
Japan has a total of 13 F-35s, including the one that crashed. The crashed aircraft was the fifth F-35 delivered to the ASDF, but the first assembled by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Japan, a second ASDF official told Reuters.
The previous four aircraft had been used for training in the United States before being brought to Japan, the defence official said.
A representative for Mitsubishi Heavy Industries said the company had no immediate comment. Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd assembles the aircraft at a plant near Nagoya in central Japan. Each costs around $100m, slightly more than the cost of buying a fully assembled plane.
The aircraft had been in the air for 28 minutes when contact was lost, the official said. The pilot had 3,200 hours of flight time, with 60 hours on the F-35, the official said.
The aircraft crashed in waters that reach a depth of around 1,500 metres, making recovery difficult, the official said.
ONLY SECOND F35 TO CRASH
The aircraft was less than a year old and was delivered to the ASDF in May last year, the ASDF spokesman said. Japan’s first squadron of F-35s has just become operational at Misawa and the government plans to buy 87 of the stealth fighters to modernise its air defences as China’s military power grows.
The crash marks only the second time an F-35 has gone down since the plane began flying almost two decades ago. It was also the first crash of an A version of the fifth-generation fighter, which is designed to penetrate enemy defences by evading radar detection.
Lockheed Martin, which manufactures the aircraft, said it was standing by to support the Japanese Air Self Defence Force as needed. The Pentagon said it was monitoring the situation.
A U.S. military short take off and landing (STOVL) F-35B crashed near the Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort in South Carolina in September prompting a temporary grounding of the aircraft. Lockheed Martin also makes a C version of the fighter designed to operate off carriers.
Japan’s new F-35s will include 18 short take off and vertical landing (STOVL) B variants that planners want to deploy on its islands along the edge of the East China Sea. (Source: Reuters)
10 Apr 19. Crashed F-35 was the first one assembled by Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy – official. The Lockheed Martin F-35 aircraft that crashed over the Pacific Ocean near northern Japan was the first one to have been assembled by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, an Air Self Defence Force official told Reuters on Wednesday. The aircraft that crashed on Tuesday was the fifth F-35 delivered to Japan’s Air Self Defence Force (ASDF), adding that the first four had been used in training in the United States before being brought over. A representative for Mitsubishi Heavy said the company had no immediate comment. The F-35 had been in the air for 28 minutes when contact was lost, the official said, adding that the pilot had not reported any problems with the aircraft before contact was lost. (Source: Reuters)
06 Apr 19. US Officials Shoot Down Indian Claims of F-16 Kill. The US has confirmed that all of the Pakistan Air Force’s F-16s have been accounted for, according to a report in Foreign Policy, published on Friday, April 5. This confirms a March 5 Asia Times article outlining that there was no proof to support Indian claims that an Indian Air Force (IAF) MiG-21 had downed the F-16. In the last week of February, Indian fighter jets hit a suspected terror camp in Balakot, Pakistan, leading to a sudden escalation in tensions between the nuclear-armed South Asian neighbors. The air attacks came in the aftermath of a suicide bomb attack on an Indian police convoy in Kashmir that killed 40 troopers. This led to the use of air power by both countries for the first time since the 1971 war. IAF claim of hitting F-16 by their Mig 21 before having been shot down by PAF gets exposed. All 4 missile seeker heads recovered intact from the wreckage & held. Pakistan and its professional Armed Forces staying humble by not drum beating. We have more truth on this to share.
Pakistan military sources told Asia Times that the F-16 fleet was assembled at the Sargodha air base where the US officials conducted the count. The military sources further confirmed that while the images of the missile heads had been leaked a couple of weeks ago, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) was waiting for the US officials’ confirmation of the F-16 audit before formally releasing the picture.
All four missiles on board the Indian MiG-21 were recovered from the wreckage after it was shot down by Pakistan air defense, inquiries by Asia Times revealed. The pilot, wing commander Abhinandan Varthaman, was captured by Pakistani authorities but released the next day after the US, UAE and Saudi Arabia intervened. The release led to a de-escalation of tensions between India and Pakistan. (Source: defense-aerospace.com/Asia Times)
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