Tag: Military

Nordic Air Defence Exercise to be held in Mikkeli, Finland from 30 October

Finnish Army’s ASRAD-R air defense system

A Nordic planning exercise of the air defence branch, Exercise Nordic Helmet 2017 will be held in Mikkeli from 30 October to 2 November 2017.

Involving the planning of upcoming air defence exercises as well as exchanging of information and experiences concerning air defence weapons systems, the exercise will be led by Inspector of Air Defence, Colonel Ari Grönroos from the Finnish Army Command.

Altogether 20 professional soldiers are to participate in the exercise from Finland, Sweden and Norway. Meanwhile, meeting of the participating countries’ Inspectors of Air Defence will be organised.

Exercise Nordic Helmet 2017 is part of Nordic defence cooperation, Nordefco, resting on sustained contacts between Nordic armed forces and defence administrations as well as regular meetings. Finland currently holds the Nordefco chairship.

Organised in alternate years in Finland, Sweden and Norway, the exercise Nordic Helmet was previously organised in Finland in 2014.


NATO jets in Baltics scrambled once last week over Russian warplane

NATO fighter-jets patrolling Baltic airspace were scrambled once last week to identify and escort a Russian military plane in international airspace over the Baltic Sea, the Lithuanian Defense Ministry said on Monday.

The Alliance’s fighters on Oct. 18 intercepted a Su-24 plane on its way from Russia’s Baltic Sea exclave of Kaliningrad to mainland Russia, it said.

The aircraft flew according to a flight plan, its transponder was switched off and the crew did not maintain radio contact with the regional air traffic control center.

NATO’s fighter-jets conduct the Baltic air-policing mission from Lithuania and Estonia.


Exercise in Riga to imitate escalation of crisis in Baltic region

On October 24-26, Baltic Host 2017 exercise will be held in Riga to imitate a scenario that includes escalation of crisis in the Baltic region, the Latvian Defense Ministry reported.

The goal of the exercise is to test hosting of NATO units in the Baltic territory and learn the hosting support concept.
Host country support concept is civil and military support provided by the host country to the allied forces and organizations in its territory during the peace, crisis or war situation.

The exercise has been held every year since 2009 on a rotation principle. This year Latvia is the lead in the exercise.

Participating in the exercise will be the Baltic defense sector, representatives of the NATO Multinational Corps Northeast Szczecin, the Allied Joint Force Command Brunssum, representatives of NATO integration units from Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, Slovakia and Hungary, and the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps in Italy and the German Armed Forces.


Final stage of CSTO joint military exercise takes place in Kazakhstan

The final stage of the CSTO joint military exercise took place in Kazakhstan.

The Collective Rapid Reaction Force of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) began the two-week exercise at Kazakhstan’s Matybulak training grounds on October 2, with more than 7,000 personnel from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan taking part.

The CSTO comprises Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan.

According to the CSTO Secretariat, the exercise is aimed at practicing the deployment of the force in crisis situations on the territory of member states.


Russia stands by promise to deliver six MiG-29 fighter jets to Serbia

Russia has kept its promise to deliver six Mikoyan MiG-29 fighters to Serbia, which was timed to coincide with the 73rd anniversary of the liberation of Belgrade from Nazi Germany, Russian Defense Minister Army General Sergei Shoigu said.

The Russian defense minister made this statement at a meeting with his Serbian counterpart Aleksandar Vulin.

“In August, when you were in Moscow, I promised that by the time of this celebration the planes will arrive in Belgrade. The planes are now in Belgrade. I am sure that they will serve as a reliable shield and a guarantor of Serbia’s independence and security,” Shoigu said.

The six MiG-29 fighter jets have been delivered to Serbia by decision of Russian President Vladimir Putin. It was reported earlier that the six MiG-29 fighters had flown from Russia to Serbia in early October.

Serbia is grateful to Russia for the transfer of six MiG-29 fighters, the Serbian defense minister said, stressing the importance of the agreement between the presidents of Russia and Serbia.

“Thanks to this, we can say that today we have a possibility to defend our sky,” Vulin told his Russian counterpart.

“I want to thank you personally, dear minister because I know how many efforts and much labor were needed to do all this. Thank you that today you are participating in this celebration together with us,” the Serbian defense minister said.
The six MiG-29 fighter jets arrived in Serbia in a group of two planes a day on October 2-4. Now they will undergo modernization that will be carried out in three stages and will cost Serbia 180-230 million euros.

In addition to the MiG-29 planes, Serbia will also receive 30 T-72 tanks and 30 BRDM-2 combat reconnaissance and patrol vehicles from Russia for free. The sides are also holding negotiations on Buk-M1 and Buk-M2 air defense missile systems and the Tunguska antiaircraft missile/gun complex.

T-72B3M (2016 model)

The Russian defense minister also noted that Russia and Serbia had big plans for military and military-technical cooperation.

“In accordance with the decisions by the presidents of Russia and Serbia, we have a large-scale program for both military and military-technical cooperation,” Shoigu said and suggested that he and Vulin should discuss further cooperation plans.






Clock ticking for Canada on Super Hornet offer

F/A-18F Super Hornet with a full compliment of fuel tanks. U.S. Navy photo by PhotographerÕs Mate 2nd Class Christopher L. Jordan.

The Canadian Press recently reported that the Trudeau government has until the end of the year to decide on an offer for Super Hornet fighter jets.

There is a formal offer on the table to sell 18 Boeing Super Hornets. But that is in limbo because of Boeing’s complaint about the Canadian government and the support it has provided to Bombardier for the development of the C-Series passenger aircraft.

The Trudeau government can ask for an extension, but there is no guarantee it will be granted, Canadian Press noted.

But industry officials tell Defence Watch there the Liberals don’t have much to worry about. Boeing is not going to turn down $6 billion in business if the Trudeau government decides to buy the aircraft.

The Trump administration is also not going to turn down an offer that would secure well-paying U.S. jobs at Boeing’s production facility.

Would there be a price increase? There could be a slight one but that could be offset by tougher bargaining on the part of the Canadian government, officials say.

Boeing, which has seen its reputation undermined in Canada because of the whole Bombardier issue, might be in a mood to provide even more favourable terms, they add.

Whether the Liberal government buys Super Hornets or simply delays the acquisition of aircraft until after the next election remains to be seen.

Inside the Royal Canadian Air Force there is the view that it makes sense to just go into a competition for a full-fleet replacement instead of buying “interim” Super Hornets.


China vows to modernize army and expand military might

(Zha Chunming/Xinhua via AP)

China’s authorities plan to actively modernize the army and boost the potential of forces, Chinese President Xi Jinping said at the opening of the 19th Communist Party’s Congress on Wednesday.

“We will do our utmost to enhance defensive capacity and modernization of China’s Armed Forces,” the Chinese leader said.

The government will honor the army traditions and improve the methods of combat and professional training of soldiers and officers. “China’s reforms in national defense allowed achieving a historic breakthrough…The Chinese People’s Liberation Army is steadily moving towards ‘socialism with Chinese specifics,’” he stressed.

“The authorities will make all efforts to ensure that by 2035 China will have a modern army with defensive power,” he said. “Finally, by the middle of this century this country will have the most advanced forces in the world.”

Some 2,280 delegates are attending the forum, which will last until October 24. The Congress will consider the result of the party’s work over the past five years and discuss economic and political situation in China and other countries, and outline a strategic line of development in the republic for the coming years. After the forum, the party is expected to unveil the new members of its top bodies – the Politburo, its Standing Committee and the Central Committee.





Post-Soviet security bloc begins military drills in Kazakhstan

Anatoly Semekhin/TASS

The Indestructible Brotherhood-2017 drills on the post-conflict settlement involving peacekeeping forces of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a post-Soviet security bloc, kicked off in Kazakhstan on Monday.

The maneuvers in south-eastern Kazakhstan’s Iliysky firing ground will be held until October 20, the country’s Defense Ministry said.

“The drills involve peacekeeping contingents from Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan, and police units part of the CSTO Collective Peacekeeping Forces,” the press service said.

Representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the joint headquarters and the secretariat of the CSTO have been also invited, it said.

The major goal of the drills will be deepening mutual understanding among the CSTO peacekeeping contingents. During the maneuvers, the commanders and staff will practice to prepare for peacekeeping operations and control CSTO units, solve the tasks on localizing conflicts and improving field training during joint actions in tough conditions of Central Asia.

The participants will also train to hold negotiations, accompany humanitarian cargos, patrol and be on duty at observation points and checkpoints, and destroy militants’ training camps. The maneuvers will also involve psychological operations and information warfare units.

According to the scenario of drills, the situation will gradually change due to the massive arrival of refugees. Special attention will be paid to improving cohesion of the peacekeeping contingents.







Indian ships to arrive in Russia for Indra-2017 exercises on October 19

Yuri Smityuk/TASS

A detachment of Indian Navy warships will arrive in Vladivostok, the home port of the Russian Pacific Fleet, for the Indra-2017 Russian-Indian drills, Pacific Fleet Spokesman Nikolay Voskresensky told reporters on Monday.

“The solemn ceremony of meeting a detachment of Indian Navy ships will take place at the 33rd berth of Vladivostok’s Korabelnaya Embankment. Taking part in it will be representatives of the Russian Navy command, the crews of the vessels taking part in the exercises, an honor guard company and the orchestra of the Pacific Fleet Staff,” he said.

According to Voskresensky, the solemn opening ceremony of the Indra-2017 exercises will take place on October 20.

Earlier reports said that the Satpura frigate and the Cadmatt corvette would be dispatched to take part in the exercises. A total of 900 Indian military servicemen will take part in them.

This year, instead of the Indra Navy-2016, the Avia Indra-2016 and the Indra-2016 exercises held last year, the two countries will hold maneuvers that will involve three armed forces branches – the Pacific Fleet, aviation units and the ground forces of the Eastern Military District.




Exercise Aurora 17 Retrospective – U.S. Marines in Anti-Tank Exercise with Swedish Armored Brigade [VIDEO]

Rocket Power Practice: Marines fire off a simulated rocket-propelled grenade round during Exercise Aurora 17 in Lärbro, Sweden, Sept. 21, 2017. Marine Corps photo by Staff Sgt. Marcin Platek.

In order to increase military capabilities, the Swedish Armed Forces conducted Exercise Aurora 17 in September. It was a  national exercise that built a stronger defence and increased the overall capability of the armed forces in the face of an attack on Sweden.

The overarching mission of the Swedish Armed Forces is to defend the country´s interests, our freedom and the right to live as a free and democratic people.

Deterrence lies at the core of a strong defence, one that rises to all threats and overcomes all challenges. It is designed to deter potential attackers, and force them to carefully consider the risks of attacking our country. For a deterrent to be effective, it needs to be credible and visible. Through frequent and extensive training and exercise, especially with other defence forces, Sweden is strengthening its deterrence effect and increases our defensive capabilities.

Aurora 17 was conducted in the air, on land and at sea. Units from all over Sweden were involved, but the main exercise areas were the Mälardalen and Stockholm areas, on and around Gotland, and the Gothenburg area.

The Exercise contributed to the development of Sweden’s total defence capabilities. 40 other agencies will participated in the exercise. In addition, in order to have as good an exercise as possible, and at the same time exercise Sweden’s defence capability against a larger, sophisticated opponent, other countries have been invited to participate in Aurora 17. This video demonstrates that concept with the United States Marine Corps acting as the ‘opponents’ using Russian RPGs in a simulated anti-tank attack exercise against Swedish ‘Blue’ forces.


Exercise Aurora 17 Retrospective – U.S. Special Operations CV-22 Ospreys [VIDEO]

CV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft from U.S. Special Operations Command Europe participated in Exercise Aurora 17, the largest military exercise in Sweden over the last 20 years. More than 19,000 personnel from Sweden participated in the exercise alongside an estimated 1,500 personnel from Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Lithuania, Latvia, Norway, and the United States. Filmed out of Satenas Airbase, Sweden in September, 2017.