24 February 2015 Military News
- Dempsey: Coalition Gains Put ISIL in 'Difficult Position' AFPS 24 Feb 2015 -- Strategic and tactical gains by coalition partners have made a difference in the fight against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said here today.
- New Zealand Signals Readiness to Join Anti-ISIL Mission Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- New Zealand's government has said it would send soldiers to help train Iraq's armed forces to fight Islamic State militants, but would not be involved in combat operations, news reports said.
- Taliban reject reports of talks with Kabul Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- The Taliban militants in Afghanistan have rejected recent reports suggesting that they agreed to hold preliminary peace talks with the government in Kabul.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System Completes Successful Tracking and Simulated Engagements of Three Short-Range Ballistic Missiles MDA 24 Feb 2015-- The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and Sailors aboard the USS CARNEY (DDG-64), USS GONZALEZ (DDG-66) and USS BARRY (DDG-52) successfully completed a flight test today involving the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) weapon system.
- US Military Denies Special Gear for African Partners is to Fight Boko Haram Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- The communications equipment introduced at the Flintlock exercises in Chad is not intended solely to counter the Boko Haram militant group, the media engagement chief at US Africa Command (USAFRICOM) told Sputnik on Tuesday.
- US Marines operate ROK weapons USMC News 24 Feb 2015 -- Marines step forward onto the firing range, leveling their sites on their targets, they await the command to fire. The command is given and the sound of gunfire rings in nearby ears as targets fall hundreds of meters out.
- Marines, bring the big guns: 1/10, train to suppress enemy targets USMC News 24 Feb 2015 -- Marines with 1st Battalion, 10th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, hooked an M777-A2 howitzer to a CH-53E Super Stallion during a training exercise aboard Training Landing Zone Hawk before making a movement to TLZ Dodo and conducting a live-fire exercise, Feb. 19, 2015.
- U.S., Canada Participate in Joint Exercise NNS 24 Feb 2015 -- Royal Canadian and U.S. Navy ships will participate in a Task Force Exercise (TFEX) off the coast of Virginia and the Carolinas, beginning Feb. 23.
- Rough Riders Take the Reins Aboard USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) NNS 24 Feb 2015 -- LCS Crew 103 Rough Riders and the littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) completed at-sea workups Feb. 24 following last week's crew swap, the first of three crew swaps during the ship's maiden 16-month deployment to the Asia-Pacific.
- Albuquerque Visits Australia During Final Deployment NNS 24 Feb 2015 -- The Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Albuquerque (SSN 706) arrived at Stirling, Australia, Feb. 24, for a scheduled visit as part of Albuquerque's final deployment before being decommissioned.
- USS Constitution Commemorates 200th Anniversary of Dual Victory over Royal Navy NNS 24 Feb 2015 -- The crew of USS Constitution commemorated the bicentennial of Old Ironsides' final battle during the War of 1812, her unprecedented dual-victory over Royal Navy ships HMS Cyane and HMS Levant, on Friday, Feb. 20 in Charlestown Navy Yard.
- US Navy Tests Submarine-Based Ballistic Missile System Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- The US Navy conducted its 155th successful test of the Trident II D5 submarine-based ballistic missile, the missile's manufacturer Lockheed Martin said in a statement.
- AF marks first RQ-4 non-military base landing at Australian air show AFNS 24 Feb 2015 -- A remotely piloted U.S. Air Force RQ-4 Global Hawk aircraft landed Feb. 22, at Avalon Airport in Victoria, Australia, marking this the first time a high-altitude asset has flown into a non-military air base to be viewed by the general public.
- US, South Korea Announce Massive Annual War Games Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- Washington and Seoul have announced that they plan to kick off their annual joint winter war games, codenamed Key Resolve and Foal Eagle, in South Korea on March 2, sources said.
- Pyongyang Threatens to 'Give a Military Rebuff' to US-S. Korea Drills Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- Pyongyang threatened to respond militarily to the joint US-South Korea military drills, scheduled for March 2, the official newspaper of the Central Committee of the Worker's Party of North Korea reported Tuesday.
- NATO Secretary General welcomes cooperation with the International Energy Agency NATO 24 Feb 2015 -- NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed Fatih Birol, Chief Economist of the International Energy Agency (IEA) to NATO on Tuesday (24 February 2015). Dr. Birol has just been named the next Executive Director of IEA.
- Back to Conscription? Lithuania Buffs Army as Paranoia Campaign Intensifies Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- Lithuania will reinstate military conscription later in 2015, and at least until 2020, the country's president, Dalia Grybauskaite, announced on Tuesday.
- Lithuania to Reinstate Limited Conscription VOA 24 Feb 2015 -- Lithuania said Tuesday it would reinstate limited conscription later this year as a precautionary measure, given a new geopolitical situation.
- Pentagon Expedites $17.9 Million in Equipment to Aid Iraqis AFPS 24 Feb 2015 -- The Defense Department has expedited $17.9 million in equipment and supplies –- some which have already been delivered –- to the Iraqi government, Pentagon spokesman Army Col. Steve Warren told reporters today.
- Iran, Iraq stress boosting defense cooperation ISNA 24 Feb 2015 -- Iranian Defense Minister Brigadier General Hossein Dehghan and his Iraqi counterpart Khaled al-Obeidi in a phone call discussed Iraq's developments as well as bilateral and regional issues and stressed further mutual cooperation in fighting terrorism.
- Iran, Iraq call for enhanced defense relations Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- The Iranian defense minister has voiced the Islamic Republic's preparedness to further enhance its defense cooperation with Iraq, which has been engaged in a fierce battle against ISIL Takfiri terrorists.
- Cameron: British military advisers to train Ukrainian army Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- British Prime Minister David Cameron says the UK will send military advisers to Ukraine to provide advice and training to the government troops.
- UK to Send Military Personnel to Ukraine Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- British Prime Minister David Cameron has confirmed that the UK will send up to 75 military personnel to Ukraine within the next month to help train local Ukrainian forces.
- PM announces package of non-lethal support to Ukraine UK MOD 24 Feb 2015 -- The Prime Minister has announced today that the UK will provide further non-lethal support to Ukraine by sending advisory and short-term training teams to build the capacity and resilience of its Armed Forces.
- Indonesia mulls delay in arms deal with Brazil over execution Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- Indonesia says it is rethinking the purchase of military hardware from Brazil amid a standoff between Jakarta and Brasilia over the planned execution of a Brazilian national in the Asian country.
- Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest, 2/24/15 The White House 24 Feb 2015
- 24 February 2015 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 24 Feb 2015
- New Study Suggests Reforms to UN Peacekeeping Operations VOA 24 Feb 2015 -- A new study suggests reforms to help improve United Nations peacekeeping operations around the world. It includes the better matching of mandates with mission capacity and resources, and clarifying expectations surrounding UN troop deployments.
- Ukraine Rebels Say Weapons Pullback Under Way VOA 24 Feb 2015 -- Rebels in war-torn eastern Ukraine said they have begun pulling back heavy weapons from the frontlines, as required by an internationally brokered cease-fire.
- Heavy weaponry withdrawal locked in stalemate in eastern Ukraine People's Daily 24 Feb 2015 -- Both the Ukrainian government and the pro-independence insurgents failed to start a withdrawal of their heavy weapons from the front line in eastern Ukraine as agreed, official reports showed Monday.
- Pro-Russians say withdrawing heavy weaponry from Donetsk Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- Pro-Russian forces in the self-declared Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) have begun a full-scale withdrawal of heavy weaponry from the frontlines, officials say.
- Ukraine Says Russian-Backed Rebels Still Attacking RFE/RL 24 Feb 2015 -- A Ukrainian military official says Russian-backed rebels have continued attacking government positions in violation of a cease-fire agreement.
- DPR Ready to Appeal to Minsk Group if Kiev Fails to Withdraw Weapons Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- Authorities of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) in eastern Ukraine will appeal to the international guarantors of the recent Minsk agreements if Kiev fails to meet the deadline on the withdrawal of its heavy weaponry from the separation line, the DPR top negotiator said Tuesday.
- Kiev to Start Heavy Weaponry Withdrawal After 48 Hours of Real Ceasefire Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- The Kiev government is ready to start withdrawing its heavy weaponry from the line of contact after 48 hours of real ceasefire, a Kiev military spokesman said Tuesday.
- Donetsk Begins Withdrawal of Heavy Artillery - Militia Deputy Commander Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- The eastern Ukrainian self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic began the withdrawal of heavy artillery from the front line on Tuesday morning, deputy commander of the DNR's militia Eduard Basurin said.
- With millions 'seriously at risk,' UN launches humanitarian appeal for Ukraine UN News Centre 24 Feb 2015 -- The enormous humanitarian needs of the people of Ukraine have intensified since January this year, outstripping local capacities, the United Nations' top official in Ukraine said today as the international community launched a new humanitarian appeal for the country.
- UN chief meets Ukrainian Foreign Minister to discuss conflict, Minsk Agreement UN News Centre 24 Feb 2015 -- The United Nations Secretary-General met yesterday in New York with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Pavlo Klimkin, to discuss the conflict in the east of that country.
- Putin Says War With Ukraine 'Unlikely' RFE/RL 24 Feb 2015 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin says a war with Ukraine is 'unlikely' and he hopes 'it will never happen.'
- U.S., Russia Clash Over Ukraine At UN RFE/RL 24 Feb 2015 -- The United States and Russia traded accusations mainly over the conflict in Ukraine at the UN Security Council on February 23.
- IS Broadens Fundraising as Oil Revenue Falls VOA 24 Feb 2015 -- U.S-led coalition efforts to cut off one of the Islamic State militants' main funding sources, oil smuggling, by bombing the militants' improvised oil drilling in Syria and transportation infrastructure has had some success and may have cut profits by half. But analysts and inhabitants in territory the group controls warn the jihadist organization has many other ways to finance itself, including securing ransom for hostages.
- Activists: IS Kidnaps 90 Assyrian Christians VOA 24 Feb 2015 -- Islamic State militants kidnapped at least 90 people from Assyrian Christian villages during raids in northeastern Syria, activists said Tuesday.
- ISIL perpetrated genocide by 11,602 deaths, 165 executions in Iraq: UN IRNA 24 Feb 2015 -- The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant perpetrated genocide by deaths of 11,602 civilians and injury of 21,766 others in Iraq from June 1 to December 10, UN Information Center in Tehran said on Tuesday.
- Situation 'very worrying' for displaced families from Iraq's Anbar province, UN officials warn UN News Centre 24 Feb 2015 -- The United Nations Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary General, Lise Grande, along with Neill Wright, the country's UN refugee agency (UNHCR) representative, today visited Iraqi families recently displaced from Al Baghdadi district in the western province of Anbar.
- China completes fishery survey in South China Sea People's Daily 24 Feb 2015 -- China has completed a survey of fishery resources in the middle and southern regions of the South China Sea after two years of research, said a Chinese expert on Monday.
- South Sudan gripped by 'serious failure of leadership' as peace talks stall, warns top UN official UN News Centre 24 Feb 2015 -- Amid a worsening humanitarian situation and a fragile security environment, the continuing tensions between South Sudan's rival factions risk plunging the country into further violence, the top United Nations peacekeeping official warned today.
- Security Council renews Yemen sanctions panel for 13 months to promote political transition UN News Centre 24 Feb 2015 -- Under the terms of a resolution unanimously adopted by the United Nations Security Council today, members decided to extend the mandate of the group of four experts on Yemen, which was established to oversee sanctions measures employed against individuals and entities designated as threatening peace, security or stability in the country.
- Ex-president fugitive, with no legitimacy: Yemen's Ansarullah Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- Ansarullah fighters of Yemen's Shia Houthi movement say the country's former president has lost his legitimacy and is now being sought as a fugitive.
- Bus bomb attack kills 20 in northeastern Nigeria Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- More than a dozen people have lost their lives when a powerful explosion ripped through a bus in Nigeria's violence-plagued northeastern state of Yobe.
- At Least 27 Killed in Nigeria Blasts VOA 24 Feb 2015 -- Suicide bombers targeted two crowded bus stations in northern Nigeria Tuesday, killing at least 27 people in nearly daily violence in the embattled region.
- Tens of thousands flee rising violence in C. Africa, UN says Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- The United Nations says some 50,000 people have fled their homes in the Central African Republic over the past three months as violence keeps surging across the country.
- Central African Republic: surge in violence triggers new displacement, including into DR Congo UN News Centre 24 Feb 2015 -- An upsurge in violence in the Central African Republic (CAR) has triggered fresh displacement inside the country and across the border into the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the United Nations refugee agency said today.
- CIA to expand cyber spying capabilities: Report Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- The Central Intelligence Agency Director John Brennan intends to expand the agency's cyber-espionage capacity, including employing foreign officials as informants, current and former US officials said.
- CIA Planning Major Expansion of Cyber-Espionage Capabilities Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- that's God," James Clapper, – then being considered for his current position as head of the NSA – was quoted as saying in a 2010 investigation by the Post which exposed the extent to which the intelligence community had grown post-9/11.
- US Immigration Dispute Threatens Security Agency Shutdown VOA 24 Feb 2015 -- Another political dispute is threatening to shut down part of the U.S. government, this time over funding President Barack Obama's immigration policies and the Department of Homeland Security.
- Kerry rebukes Netanyahu over Iran 'deal' Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- US Secretary of State John Kerry has criticized officials who are speaking against a potential nuclear agreement with Iran, saying they don't "know what the deal is" amid the ongoing talks over Tehran's nuclear energy program.
- Progress Reported At Iran Nuclear Talks RFE/RL 24 Feb 2015 -- Negotiators in talks on Iran's nuclear program have reported some progress but said a lot of work remains to secure a deal.
- Report: Mossad Was Less Alarmed Than Netanyahu On Iran RFE/RL 24 Feb 2015 -- A leaked cable suggests Israel's spy agency did not share Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's view in 2012 that Iran was months away from producing enough weapons-grade uranium for making a nuclear bomb.
- UN nuclear chief meets Iranian minister to boost understanding, move towards agreement UN News Centre 24 Feb 2015 -- The head of the UN atomic watchdog held a meeting in Vienna this morning with the Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister to follow-up on talks held earlier this month.
- Moscow threatens to cut gas flow to Kiev Iran Press TV 24 Feb 2015 -- Russia's gas giant Gazprom has threatened to halt its natural gas flow to Ukraine with a full shutdown within two days, if Kiev fails to pay for deliveries.
- Gazprom Threatens To Cut Supplies To Ukraine RFE/RL 24 Feb 2015 -- Russian natural-gas giant Gazprom is threatening to cut off supplies to Ukraine entirely as early as February 26, a move the Russian company says could result in a suspension of supplies to Europe.
- Russia Not Considering Restructuring Ukraine's Debt Sputnik 24 Feb 2015 -- Russia is currently not reviewing the possible restructuring of Ukraine's debt because Moscow has not received any official requests, Russian Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Storchak said Tuesday.
- Three words of advice for WHO Africa's new chief IRIN 24 Feb 2015 -- The World Health Organization says the death toll from Ebola has risen for the second time in two consecutive weeks, despite earlier announcements that the transmission rate was on the decline.
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