25 May 2016 Military News
- OIF / OND / OEF / OIR / OFS Casualty Update 25 May 2016 [PDF]
- Coalition Strikes Continue Against ISIL in Iraq, Syria AFPS 25 May 2016 -- U.S. and coalition military forces continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Iraq and Syria yesterday, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.
- US Refuses to Let Taliban's New Leader Derail Afghanistan Reconciliation Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- DoD spokesman Adam Stump told Sputnik, that US won't let new Taliban leader derail Afghanistan reconcillation.
- New Chief Is 'Ideal' Taliban Leader, Analyst Says VOA 25 May 2016 -- The Taliban's new chief, Mawlawi Haibatullah Akhundzada, has a reputation as a respected religious scholar with the title "sheikh-ul-hadith," a specialist in interpreting the words of Mohammad, the prophet of Islam.
- Taliban not to enter into peace talks with Kabul: New leader Press TV 25 May 2016 -- The Afghan Taliban's newly-appointed leader, Haibatullah Akhundzada, has pledged that the militant group will not enter into any peace talks with the government in Kabul.
- Afghan Taliban name Haibatullah Akhundzada as new leader Press TV 25 May 2016 -- Taliban have appointed Haibatullah Akhundzada as their new leader, officially confirming that their former chief Mullah Akhtar Mansour was killed in a US drone strike last week.
- Rumblings Emerge After Taliban Names New Leader RFE/RL 25 May 2016 -- The Afghan Taliban has confirmed that leader Mullah Akhtar Mansur was killed in a U.S. drone strike last week and appointed as his successor a scholar known for his radical views.
- Afghanistan Claims Taliban's 'Shadow Governor' In Helmand Killed RFE/RL 25 May 2016 -- Afghan authorities say security forces have killed a senior Taliban commander they identified as the "shadow governor" of the southern province of Helmand.
- Taliban IDs New Leader, Confirms Mansoor Death VOA 25 May 2016 -- Afghanistan's Taliban says Mawlawi Haibatullah Akhundzada has been appointed the new chief of the group following the death of Mullah Akhtar Mansoor.
- Afghan Taliban Appoints New Leader After Death Of Mansur RFE/RL 25 May 2016 -- The Afghan Taliban has announced a new leader to replace Mullah Akhtar Mansur, who was killed in a U.S. drone strike last week.
- Pak army chief slams US over drone strike in Balochistan IRNA 25 May 2016 -- Pakistan Army Chief General Raheel Sharif in a meeting with the US Ambassador to Pakistan David Hale on Wednesday expressed serious concerns over the US drone strike in Balochistan, a military statement said.
Defense Policy / Programs
- DoD Aims to Save $1.9 Billion Through Headquarters Restructuring AFPS 25 May 2016 -- The Defense Department is restructuring its headquarters as it looks to save $1.9 billion through a 25 percent reduction of staff costs, a senior DoD management official said in a recent DoD News interview.
- Carter: Rebalance is About More Than Freedom of Navigation AFPS 25 May 2016 -- Defense Secretary Ash Carter said yesterday that the U.S. rebalance to the Asia-Pacific is a "whole program of enhanced activities" intended to maintain peace and security in the region.
- Carter Addresses Asia-Pacific, Acquisition at Naval War College Forum AFPS 25 May 2016 -- Even with troubles in other parts of the world, it is still crucial the United States continue its rebalance to East Asia and the Pacific, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said today at the Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island.
- Media Availability with Secretary Carter at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center in Newport, Rhode Island DoD 25 May 2016 -- Presenter: Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
- Barksdale B-52s drop bombs in exercise with Jordanian forces AFNS 25 May 2016 -- Two B-52 Stratofortress bombers assigned to the 2nd Bomb Wing at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, returned May 24 from a 35-hour, 14,000-mile nonstop mission to Jordan as part of this year's exercise Eager Lion with Jordanian Armed Forces (JAF).
- Special ops Airmen support exercise in Baltic region AFNS 25 May 2016 -- Members from the Air Force Special Operations Command and the U.S. Army Special Operations Command joined with Lithuanian, Latvian and Estonian special operations forces (SOF) in Powidz, Poland, and Grafenwoehr, Germany, to participate in Trojan Footprint 16, a large-scale readiness exercise held May 3-22.
- Remarks by Secretary Carter at the U.S. Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island DoD 25 May 2016 -- Presenter: Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
- Mount Whitney Arrives in Lisbon NNS 25 May 2016 -- Amphibious command ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) arrived in Lisbon, Portugal May 24.
- Sweden approves giving NATO more access amid Russia tensions Press TV 25 May 2016 -- Sweden's parliament has approved a deal with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to give the Western military alliance more access to its territory amid brewing tensions between the neutral Nordic country and Russia.
- NATO's 'Tank Schengen': Baltic States Call for Free Movement… of Troops Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- The defense ministers of the three Baltic States have called for an easing of travel restrictions on the movement of NATO troops and equipment in Europe, and are suggesting the creation of a visa-free space, similar to that of the Schengen area, to accelerate the deployment of allied forces and armament in the Baltic States.
- Steel Typhoon: Russian Special Forces Get New Armored Vehicle Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- Russian Armed Forces reconnaissance and special forces units will soon be bolstered by new mine-resistant, ambush-protected Typhoon vehicles.
- US Vietnam Arms Embargo Lift a 'Wake-Up Call' for Russia? Not Really… Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- The recently announced lift of a decades-long US ban on lethal arms supplies to Vietnam is seen by some experts as a 'wake-up call' for Russia, which is the largest arms supplier to the country, however others suggest that it won't alter the arms trade between the two, as the ties run much deeper than that.
- China, Thailand vow to further promote military ties People's Daily 25 May 2016 -- China and Thailand have vowed to improve military relations and cooperation in areas such as training and defense industry.
- Top navy commander stresses need for presence in high seas IRNA 25 May 2016 -- Commander of the first zone of the Navy said on Wednesday that the more the frequencies of Iran's presence in the sea will lead to less interventionist policies of trans-regional countries in the region.
- Iran to hold joint navy drills with India on Friday ISNA 25 May 2016 -- Iran's Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari said the country is to hold joint navy drills with India on Friday.
- S Korea to Purchase $3Bln in Weapons in 2016 Amid North's Nuclear Threats Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- S Korea is to purchase arms worth 3.5 trillion won to boost its military capacity amid North Korea's increasing nuclear threats, local media reported on Wednesday, citing the country's defense procurement agency.
- S. Korea, U.S., Japan defense chiefs to hold talks on DPRK nuke program People's Daily 25 May 2016 -- Defense ministers of South Korea, the United Statesand Japanwill hold talks on the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK)'s nuclear program on the sidelines of a regional security meeting scheduled for early next month, Seoul's defense ministry said Wednesday.
- France Cuts Price on Rafale Jets for India to $8.6Bln Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- Paris has agreed to decrease the pricing of its long-awaited deal on Rafale fighter jets with New Delhi by some 7-8 percent, local media reported Wednesday.
- India Proposes France Disposes: France Rejects Bank Guarantee for Rafale Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- France has rejected the offer of a bank guarantee and is now waiting for further communication from India.
- Collateral Damage: India Cancels Another Defense Deal With Italy Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- The decision comes in the wake of a bribery scandal that came to light after an Italian court found there were irregularities in a chopper deal involving AgustaWestland, another subsidiary of the firm.
- India to Purchase Israeli Spyder Air Defense Systems Worth $270 Mln Sputnik 26 May 2016 -- New Delhi will purchase Israeli Spyder air defense systems worth $270 million, local media reported.
- May 25, 2016 - U.S. Department of State Daily Press Briefing US Dept. of State 25 May 2016
- 25 May 2016 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 25 May 2016
- SCO supports peace and stability in South China Sea People's Daily 25 May 2016 -- Countries of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) on Tuesday expressed support for maintaining peace and stability in Asia-Pacific region, including the South China Sea.
- Taiwan will continue to patrol Okinotori waters: spokesman CNA 25 May 2016 -- Government spokesman Tung Chen-yuan (童振源) said Wednesday that Taiwan will continue to send patrol vessels to protect its fishing boats in waters near the controversial Okinotori atoll when the current patrol mission there ends.
- Patrol deployments to protect fishermen unchanged: Coast Guard head CNA 25 May 2016 -- Coast Guard Administration (CGA) Director-General Lee Chung-wei (李仲威) has emphasized the Taiwan government's determination to protect its fishermen, and said that patrol deployments in waters near a Japan-controlled atoll in the West Pacific have not changed.
- UN says Yemen deal close as dozen killed in Saudi airstrikes Press TV 25 May 2016 -- At least a dozen civilians are killed in Saudi airstrikes in northern Yemen as the UN envoy says warring parties are closer to agreement at peace talks in Kuwait.
- Turkey supplying Daesh with bomb components: Russia Press TV 25 May 2016 -- Russia has claimed Turkey is supplying Daesh Takfiri terrorists with the parts necessary to manufacture improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
- Syrian SDF Opposition to Review Russian Offer to Fight Daesh Together Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- According to spokesman Talal Selo the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the US-led coalition will review the Russian proposal to cooperate in fighting the Daesh terror group during the liberation of the Syrian city of Raqqa.
- Syrian Armed Groups Urge Russia to Halt Strikes Until Al-Nusra Front Routed Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- Russia has received a multiple appeals from militant groups in Syria for it to hold off on carrying out airstrikes against extremist positions in territories under their control until they have managed to force out the Nusra Front jihadists there, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said Wednesday.
- Jordan May Start Military Campaign to Secure Borders Against Daesh Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- Ambassador to Russia Ziad al-Majali said that Jordan does not rule out deploying troops to ward off the Daesh militants from its border with Syria.
- Daesh uses civilians in Raqqa as human shield: Activist Press TV 25 May 2016 -- A Syrian activist says the Daesh Takfiris are using civilians in the Syrian city of Raqqa as human shields during their fight against an alliance of Kurdish and Arab forces.
- Raqqa Civilians Flee Airstrikes as Kurds, Jihadists Clash VOA 25 May 2016 -- U.S.-led coalition warplanes carried out intense airstrikes Tuesday on Raqqa, the de facto Syrian capital of the Islamic State group, a monitoring group said, continuing days of air-raids that appear to be aimed at demoralizing jihadist fighters before an offensive by Kurdish-led forces on villages to the north of the city.
- Iraqi troops advancing towards Fallujah from south: Cmdr. Press TV 25 May 2016 -- Iraqi soldiers and allied volunteer fighters have pushed towards Fallujah from areas to the south as part of an operation to liberate the city from the grip of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, says a commander.
- Will The Battle For Fallujah Heal Or Exacerbate Iraq's Sectarianism? RFE/RL 25 May 2016 -- The battle for Fallujah has begun. Late on May 23, Iraqi troops, comprising a combination of the government's Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and a combustible mix of Shi'ite militias, backed by U.S. air strikes, attacked the city, seeking to wrest it from the control of the extremist group Islamic State (IS).
- IS Using Civilians as Human Shields in Fallujah VOA 25 May 2016 -- Iraqi forces backed by an assortment of Shi'ite militias, have faced harsh resistance in their multi-sided offensive to retake Fallujah from Islamic State extremists who have controlled the city since 2014.
- Freed Ukrainian pilot arrives home after nearly two years in Russia jail Press TV 25 May 2016 -- After serving almost two years in a Russian jail, Ukrainian pilot, Nadiya Savchenko, has arrived home through a prisoner swap deal that is likely to ease diplomatic tensions between Moscow and Kiev.
- Savchenko Returns To Ukraine In Russian Prisoner Swap RFE/RL 25 May 2016 -- Ukrainian pilot Nadia Savchenko has been freed after nearly two years in Russian captivity. Savchenko, whose defiance in Russian detention made her a national hero, arrived in Kyiv on May 25 aboard Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's plane.
- Ukraine Pilot, Jailed by Russia, Returns Home VOA 25 May 2016 -- A Ukrainian army helicopter pilot who spent nearly two years in a Russian prison flew home to a hero's welcome after being freed in a swap with Moscow.
- Security Council ends 13-year sanctions regime on Liberia UN News 25 May 2016 -- Acknowledging the sustained progress made on rebuilding Liberia after the 1999-2003 civil war, the United Nations Security Council today terminated an arms embargo against the country and dissolved the related mechanisms, namely the sanctions Committee and the expert panel.
- UN Lifts Last of Liberia Sanctions VOA 25 May 2016 -- The U.N. Security Council has lifted the last international sanctions against Liberia.
- Egypt army kills 85 militants in Sinai Peninsula Press TV 25 May 2016 -- Egypt's army says its forces have managed to kill 85 terrorists in air and artillery attacks in the restive province of North Sinai.
- 'The will to advance towards peace clearly exists' in the Middle East - UN envoy UN News 25 May 2016 -- The United Nations envoy for the peace process in the Middle East today warned the Security Council that, as circumstances on the ground continue to deteriorate, lamenting the disappearance of a negotiated two-state solution has become a "default narrative" for many.
- Lebanon arrests senior Daesh commander in Arsal Press TV 25 May 2016 -- Lebanon has arrested a senior commander of the Daesh Takfiri group in the country's northeastern region near the border with Syria, local media report.
- UN agencies provide seeds and food to break hunger cycle in Central African Republic UN News 25 May 2016 -- Two United Nations agencies have begun providing both seeds and food to nearly 50,000 hungry farming families in some areas of the conflict-torn Central African Republic (CAR) to ensure that they don't eat seeds meant for planting.
- DR Congo: Ban 'profoundly concerned' over reports of rising political tensions UN News 25 May 2016 -- United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has expressed profound concern over reports of increasing political tensions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) linked to the continuing uncertainty surrounding the country's electoral process.
- Sudan defends expulsion of UN official over Darfur reporting Press TV 25 May 2016 -- Sudan has effectively expelled a senior United Nations humanitarian affairs official after accusing him of filing "false reports" about people displaced by the conflict in the country's war-torn Darfur region.
- Cyprus Unification Suffers Setback as Nicosia Cancels Peace Talks Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- Turkish-Cypriot Invitation 'Unacceptable'
- Israeli Leader's Party Reaches Coalition Expansion With Right-Wing Faction Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reached a deal with his former foreign minister's right-wing party to expand the ruling coalition that may be signed as soon as Wednesday, the Israeli press reported, quoting ruling party sources.
- Ultranationalist Leader Joins Israeli Government VOA 25 May 2016 -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expanded his coalition government, but the appointment of a hard-liner to a senior Cabinet post is drawing criticism, both at home and abroad.
- DRC Opposition to Protest Against Kabila VOA 25 May 2016 -- In the Democratic Republic of Congo, the opposition says it will go ahead Thursday with demonstrations against President Joseph Kabila. The opposition accuses Kabila of trying to delay elections until he can change the constitution to run for a third term.
- Fears for EU-Turkey Refugee Deal as Erdogan Threatens to Block Agreement Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- There are more fears over the future of the Turkey-EU refugee deal after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan threatened to block laws relating to the agreement if Ankara was not granted visa-free travel for Turkish citizens to the EU.
- New Visa Dispute Sours Turkey-EU Ties VOA 25 May 2016 -- Within a matter of hours of Turkey's new government being announced, a major dispute over visas erupted Wednesday between Ankara and the European Union, threatening one of the main foreign policy achievements of ousted prime minister Ahmet Davutoglu.
- Swedish court upholds Assange arrest warrant Press TV 25 May 2016 -- A Swedish court has sustained a European arrest warrant for the founder of whistleblower website WikiLeaks over a rape allegation dating back to 2010.
- Russian, Portuguese Arrested In Rome On Suspicion Of Spying RFE/RL 25 May 2016 -- A Portuguese and a Russian were arrested in Rome over the weekend on suspicion of espionage, the European Union's judicial cooperation unit Eurojust said on May 24.
- Russian Banker Sentenced in Connection with Conspiracy to Work for Russian Intelligence US Department of Justice 25 May 2016 -- Evgeny Buryakov, aka Zhenya, 41, was sentenced to 30 months in prison today for conspiring to act in the United States as an agent of the Russian Federation without providing prior notice to the Attorney General.
- U.S. Jails Russian Banker For Conspiracy To Spy RFE/RL 25 May 2016 -- A Russian banker has been sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy charges in what U.S. prosecutors have described as a Cold War-style spy ring.
- Almost 3,000 Russians Left Country to Join Terrorist Groups Sputnik 25 May 2016 -- About 3,000 Russian citizens have gone to join terrorist organizations abroad, Russian National Antiterrorism Committee (NAC) deputy head Yevgeny Ilyin said Wednesday.
- State Department Terrorist Designations of the Tariq Gidar Group and Jama'at ul Dawa al-Qu'ran US Dept. of State 25 May 2016 -- The Department of State has designated both the Tariq Gidar Group (TGG) and Jama'at ul Dawa al-Qu'ran (JDQ) as Specially Designated Global Terrorists (SDGTs) under section 1(b) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which imposes sanctions on foreign entities determined to have committed, or pose a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism that threaten the security of U.S. nationals or the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States.
- Latest Promotion of Ugandan Leader's Son Sparks Talk of Succession Conspiracy VOA 25 May 2016 -- The head of the special command forces in Uganda – who is also a son of the president – was officially promoted to major general Wednesday, a move that has drawn condemnation on social media and has stirred allegations of a succession scheme.
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