20 March 2015 Military News
- Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) Casualty Update 20 Mar 2015 [PDF]
- Military Airstrikes Continue Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq AFPS 20 Mar 2015 -- U.S. and coalition military forces have continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria and Iraq, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.
- NATO-Led Afghan Mission Cost Germany 8.8Bln Euros Sputnik 20 Mar 2015 -- The ministry's total cost for the operation that wrapped up in December 2014 was unveiled on Friday by German television channel ARD.
Defense Policy / Programs
- US Paratroopers to Start Training Ukrainian National Guard in April Sputnik 20 Mar 2015 -- which was announced last August – had been due to start in mid-March; it was delayed after leaders from Ukraine, Russia, France and Germany emerged from peace talks last month in Minsk with a second cease-fire agreement.
- DoD Moves Forward on Ukraine National Guard Training AFPS 20 Mar 2015 -- The Defense Department is moving forward with plans to train members of the Ukraine National Guard beginning in late April, Pentagon spokesman Army Col. Steve Warren said yesterday.
- Eagle Resolve Exercise Draws Worldwide Participation AFPS 20 Mar 2015 -- Improving interoperability is often touted by exercise organizers and senior leaders as one of the benefits in bringing together a cross-section of militaries.
- U.S. demonstrates continued support with Malaysia AFNS 20 Mar 2015 -- The Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition 15 (LIMA 15), which is the largest airshow in the region, officially commenced on March 17.
- T-X, future T-38 jet replacement, requirements released AFNS 20 Mar 2015 -- Air Force officials released requirements for the T-X trainer aircraft family of systems that will replace the T-38 Talon, March 20.
- PACAF air domain monitoring capability expands, evolves AFNS 20 Mar 2015 -- In January 2014, a small team of intelligence Airmen began building the Pacific Air Forces' first air watch capability.
- Kadena Airmen in full force at Cope Tiger 15 AFNS 20 Mar 2015 -- Airmen from Kadena Air Base were out in full force at exercise Cope Tiger 15 (CT15) held in Thailand, March 9-20.
- Army Reserve, Guard Leaders Caution Against Sequestration AFPS 20 Mar 2015 -- Funding allocations below President Barack Obama's budget proposal levels will risk the Reserve components' ability to fulfill the nation's global security requirements and worsen readiness challenges, senior leaders from the Army Reserve and National Guard said this week.
- Navy to Christen Amphibious Transport Dock Ship John P. Murtha DoD 20 Mar 2015 -- The Navy will christen the newest amphibious transport dock ship, John P. Murtha (LPD 26), Saturday, March 21 during a 10:00 a.m. CDT ceremony at the Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) shipyard in Pascagoula, Miss.
- Multiple Launch Rocket System Battalion Rotation Approved DoD 20 Mar 2015 -- The secretary of defense approved the nine-month rotation of a multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) battalion to the Republic of Korea.
- Forward, flexible, ready: US Marines participate in Certification Exercise USMC News 20 Mar 2015 -- The 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit is participating in certification exercises aboard the USS Bonhomme Richard, at sea, March 16-24.
- Final Planning Conference for SPS JHSV 2015 NNS 20 Mar 2015 -- U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet (USNAVSO) hosted a final planning conference (FPC) for Southern Partnership Station Joint High Speed Vessel 2015 in Mayport, Florida, March 3-4.
- SNMG2 completes operations in the Black Sea NATO 20 Mar 2015 -- NATO ships assigned to Standing NATO Maritime Group Two (SNMG2) completed their participation in joint NATO training exercises and maritime situational awareness operations in the Black Sea today.
- U.S. Reassesses Central Asia Strategy RFE/RL 20 Mar 2015 -- The United States has finalized a review of its strategy for Central Asia, a region facing economic and political uncertainty tied to Russia's flagging economy amid the Ukraine conflict and the murky succession plans of aging regional autocrats.
- Indonesia, Japan to Sign a Defense Agreement VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- Indonesia said it will sign a defense agreement with Japan -- a move certain to raise concerns in China, with which Jakarta already has a military pact.
- Russian Military Holding 'Anti-Diversion Operation' Drills on Kuril Islands Sputnik 20 Mar 2015 -- Approximately 500 military personnel are holding "anti-diversion operation" exercises on the Kuril Islands in the Pacific Ocean, the Russian Defense Ministry's Eastern Military District said Friday.
- China rebukes U.S. official over maritime patrol proposal People's Daily 20 Mar 2015 -- China on Friday rebuked a U.S. navy officer over his suggestions that the Southeast Asian nations should jointly build a maritime force to patrol areas of contested sovereignty in the South China Sea and that his fleet would provide support.
- PLA organizes open bidding for military weaponry procurement People's Daily 20 Mar 2015 -- The People's Liberation Army (PLA) carried out an open bidding on Thursday for the purchase of 35 pieces of equipment in Shijiazhuang, capital city of Hebei Province, military sources said.
- Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest, 3/20/2015 The White House 20 Mar 2015
- March 20, 2015 - U.S. Department of State Daily Press Briefing US Dept. of State 20 Mar 2015
- 20 March 2015 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 20 Mar 2015
- Kyrgyz Mercenary Details Alleged Russian Military Role In Ukraine RFE/RL 20 Mar 2015 -- In August 2014, Manas Mambetov, a senior lieutenant in the Kyrgyz Army reserves, arrived in eastern Ukraine on a moral quest to fight 'fascists.' A week ago, he returned home, accompanying the sealed coffins of two fellow Kyrgyz soldiers and disillusioned by his experience.
- EU Links Russian Sanctions To Minsk Agreement RFE/RL 20 Mar 2015 -- The European Union has decided to link its economic sanctions on Russia to the implementation of the Minsk agreement, a deal reached last month on a cease-fire and political settlement of the conflict between government forces and Russian-backed rebels in eastern Ukraine.
- Iraqi Kurdistan nears breaking point IRIN 20 Mar 2015 -- The pressure of hosting more than 1 million people displaced by militants from the group calling itself Islamic State (IS) on top of the 225,000 refugees from Syria is taking a devastating economic and social toll on Iraqi Kurdistan and increasing risks for the most vulnerable.
- Iraq army kills 3 senior ISIL commanders Press TV 20 Mar 2015 -- Iraqi army forces have killed three of the most prominent ISIL Takfiri terrorist commanders in the country's western al-Anbar Province.
- US warns Damascus over interfering in air campaign Press TV 20 Mar 2015 -- The US has warned Damascus not to interfere in its ongoing air campaign in Syria, after a US drone was shut down over the coastal province of Latakia.
- UN envoy says Libya on cusp of 'decisive moment' as parties resume peace talks UN News 20 Mar 2015 -- Negotiations between Libyan parties are entering a "decisive round" as continued fighting and the menace of terrorism cast a sense of urgency to the United Nations-facilitated talks, a senior official for the Organization said today.
- Yemen: UN chief strongly deplores terrorist bombings, urges continued peace talks UN News 20 Mar 2015 -- Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has strongly condemned the terrorist attacks against two mosques in Yemen today that have reportedly left dozens of people dead and wounded.
- ISIL claims responsibility for Sana'a blasts Press TV 20 Mar 2015 -- The ISIL Takfiri terrorist group has claimed responsibility for three deadly bomb attacks that hit mosques crowded with worshippers in the Yemeni capital, Sana'a.
- Triple bombings claim 142 lives at mosques in Yemen's capital Press TV 20 Mar 2015 -- At least 142 people have been killed and nearly 351 wounded after three bomb attacks hit mosques crowded with worshippers in the Yemeni capital, Sana'a, in quick succession.
- Yemeni IS Group Claims Sana'a Mosques Blasts VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- A group claiming to be a Yemeni branch of the Islamic State has claimed responsibility for suicide bombings in Sana'a that killed at least 126 people at mosques used by supporters of Shi'ite rebels.
- UN Confirms Working With Suspected DRC Human Rights Abusers VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- United Nations officials have confirmed that the U.N. mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo, known as MONUSCO, has in the past worked with Congolese army officers who were suspected of committing human rights violations.
- More aid needed for 120,000 displaced by clashes in southern Philippines - UN agency UN News 20 Mar 2015 -- Intensifying armed conflict in the southern Philippines island of Mindanao has displaced some 120,000 people since late January, the United Nations refugee agency said today, expressing particular concern for the safety of women and children who could be exposed to exploitation and abuse.
- Russia: Extended EU Sanctions 'Destructive' VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- Russia has denounced the European Union's move to maintain sanctions against Moscow over its role in the Ukraine conflict, calling Thursday's decision to extend the measures 'destructive.'
- Putin Proposes Talks On Currency Union RFE/RL 20 Mar 2015 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin says it is time to start talks on the formation of a currency union between Russia, Belarus, and Kazakhstan.
- Iran Nuclear Talks' Progress Unclear VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- Nearly a week of talks on curbing Iran's nuclear program has ended with mixed reports from the Swiss city of Lausanne, where some officials privately report progress between the Islamic Republic and six world powers. But others see a gap.
- Obama Urges Iran Nuclear Deal Support VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- In a greeting to Iranians marking the Persian new year, U.S. President Barack Obama told them this year represents the 'best opportunity in decades' to pursue a different relationship between the United States and the Islamic Republic.
- US House Speaker Boehner to Visit Israel VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- Republican John Boehner, speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives and a staunch supporter of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, will lead a congressional delegation to Israel late this month, the lawmaker's office said.
- EU Unlikely To Offer More To Eastern Partners At Upcoming Summit RFE/RL 20 Mar 2015 -- The draft of a document being prepared for an Eastern Partnership summit in May suggests a number of the European Union's eastern neighbors will be disappointed with a lack of progress in key areas.
- WHO Urges Focus Preventable Killer Diseases in Ebola Countries VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- The World Health Organization is calling for the urgent scale-up of mass vaccinations against preventable killer diseases in West Africa's Ebola-affected countries, now that the deadly disease is on the decline.
- Ebola-affected countries need to intensify routine immunization services – UN UN News 20 Mar 2015 -- The United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) is appealing for the "urgent scaling up" of routine immunizations services and distribution of anti-malaria medicines in countries most affected by Ebola in West Africa to counter a growing risk of outbreaks of measles, pertussis, and other vaccine-preventable diseases.
- Report says two senior Syrian intelligence officials dismissed Press TV 20 Mar 2015 -- Syria's President Bashar al-Assad has reportedly dismissed two high-ranking intelligence officials after the pair engaged in a violent argument and exchanged blows.
- State Council nod for nuclear merger soon People's Daily 20 Mar 2015 -- The State Council is likely to give its green light for the merger of China's two nuclear giants soon, a move that could lead to sector consolidation and spur more overseas ventures, industry sources said on Thursday.
- In Manila, Backlash Mounts Against Aquino VOA 20 Mar 2015 -- Philippine President Benigno Aquino is facing the biggest challenge of his political career as more people come to believe he is responsible for a bungled January police operation that left 44 police commandos and at least 23 others dead. The president's ratings have dipped below 50 percent for the first time since he took office in 2010.
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