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23 Jun 16. Nigerian Navy inaugurates Falcon Eye maritime awareness system. The Nigerian Navy officially inaugurated its new maritime awareness system at the naval headquarters in Abuja on 21 June.
Nigerian Navy Chief Vice Admiral Ibok Ete Ibas told journalists the system “reduces the cost of patrols, it gives you an accurate way of doing things. Hitherto you would have ships patrolling without a focus, [now] you can sit back here [at the control centre] and identify vessels of interest and investigate them and operations become more efficient”.
“What the navy has done today provides us an ample opportunity to synergise and tackle the issue of piracy and other criminal activities within our waterways,” said Dakuku Peterside, the director general of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA). (Source: IHS Jane’s)
22 Jun 16. USN building maritime surveillance center. The Navy has awarded a $20.5m construction contract to build a maritime surveillance center. S.B. Ballard Construction Co. will design and build a maritime surveillance system facility at Naval Air Station Oceana Dam Neck Annex, according to the Department of Defense contract announcement.
“Additionally, support spaces will include Naval Ocean Processing Facility training operations, Secure Compartmented Intelligence Facility administrative, and watch stander spaces,” the contract announcement said. The work is expected to be completed by June 2017. (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
22 Jun 16. Ukraine Seeks Radars, Anti-Drone Weapons. Although it still hopes to gain approval to purchase lethal weaponry from the US, the Ukrainian military is focused on procuring defensive capabilities that will assist it in the short term.
During a June 17 interview with Defense News, Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, vice prime minister of Ukraine for European and Euro-Atlantic integration, said her nation needs high-end capabilities in order to match up with Russian forces using the disputed territory as a “training ground” for its “most modern equipment.”
“In terms of defensive weapons, there are radars that we need to make sure we are protecting our soldiers from the attacks. Anti-drone weapons and artillery, anti-tank [weapons], that is something we have to deal with,” Klympush-Tsintsadze said. “We are so far definitely concentrating on defensive weapons, and that is something that helps us to build defense capabilities.”
The US has previously provided Humvees and unarmed Raven drones, as well as smaller items such as night vision goggles, to Ukraine, but has consistently stopped short of providing more advanced weaponry.
Some, such as former secretary of defense Chuck Hagel, have cautioned against sending Ukraine high-end technologies, in part because of concerns that the military simply is not sophisticated enough to use it.
Klympush-Tsintsadze said that part of her visit was to persuade US officials about “all the progress that we’ve been showing, what we are achieving” as a military nation. Notably, one meeting she had was with Rose Gottemoeller, under secretary of state for arms control and international security, who oversees potential weapons transfers to partner nations.
While focused on defensive weapons, the hope remains that in the long-term, the US and other allies will open up more lethal weaponry as options for Ukraine.
“We are not giving up on persuading our partners that lethal weapons would be the answer at some point,” the minister said. “Ukraine has never been the nation that ever conquered anybody, so even lethal weapons would be something to protect ourselves and makes sure we are capable of protecting our land and people.”
Ukraine has expressed interest in counter-tank weapons like the Javelin. It has one notable supporter in that quest: Gen. Curtis Scaparrotti, the recently appointed h