13 December 2016 Military News
- OIF / OND / OEF / OIR / OFS Casualty Update 13 Dec 2016 [PDF]
- Military Strikes Continue Against ISIL Terrorists in Syria, Iraq AFPS 13 Dec 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.
- Carter Confirms Deaths of Three Key ISIL Leaders AFPS 13 Dec 2016 -- During a talk today with airmen assigned to the 31st Fighter Wing stationed at Aviano Air Base in Italy, Defense Secretary Ash Carter confirmed the deaths of three key leaders of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in Raqqa, Syria, on Dec. 4.
- Iraqis Hold Line Against ISIL, DoD Spokesman Says AFPS 13 Dec 2016 -- In the past 24 hours, Iraqi forces maintained their defensive positions against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant fighters on three sides of Mosul, the country's second-largest city, Pentagon press operations director Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said today.
- Statement by Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook on Coalition Strike Against ISIL External Attack Operatives DoD 13 Dec 2016 -- A coalition precision airstrike conducted on Dec. 4 in Raqqa, Syria, resulted in the deaths of three ISIL leaders directly involved in facilitating external terror operations and recruiting foreign fighters
- US Kills 3 Top IS Leaders in Syria VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- The Pentagon said Tuesday a coalition airstrike killed three key Islamic State leaders in Syria, including two militants who were involved in last year's terrorist attacks in Paris.
- Afghan Officials Probe Abuse Allegations Against Dostum VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- The Afghan government announced late Tuesday that it had launched an investigation into allegations a former provincial governor was abducted, tortured and raped by security officials acting under the authority of First Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Developing Military Capabilities in the Heart of Europe AFPS 13 Dec 2016 -- The U.S. military is the best in the world today. The hard-won lessons from 15 years of war have been learned for the counterinsurgency fight, but the combined arms and joint skills needed for a fight against a near-peer adversary have atrophied. The U.S. military requires these full-spectrum capabilities, because with them lies full-spectrum deterrence.
- Enhanced bilateral decision-making just one goal of Yama Sakura Army News 13 Dec 2016 -- The bilateral command post exercise Yama Sakura 71 concluded Dec. 13 in Japan, where Soldiers with I Corps, out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, and Soldiers with the Japanese Western Army trained together to defeat a near-peer competitor.
- The Department of Defense Announces Update to the Law of War Manual DoD 13 Dec 2016 -- Today, the Department of Defense released an update to the Law of War Manual.
- Readout of Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work's Meeting with Australian Secretary of Defense Dennis Richardson DoD 13 Dec 2016
- Remarks by Secretary Carter at a Troop Event in Aviano, Italy DoD 13 Dec 2016 -- Presenter: Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
- Media Availability with Secretary Carter in Aviano, Italy DoD 13 Dec 2016-- Presenter: Secretary of Defense Ash Carter
- VCNO visits Singapore, reaffirms strong partnership NNS 13 Dec 2016 -- The Vice Chief of Naval Operations, Adm Bill Moran, visited Singapore Dec 12-13 to reaffirm the U.S. Navy's strong partnership and ties with the Republic of Singapore Armed Forces.
- Crew Members Rescued After Osprey Lands in Shallow Water Off Okinawa AFPS 13 Dec 2016 -- A Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey aircraft with five crew members aboard landed in shallow water off the coastline of Camp Schwab Marine Corps Base in Okinawa, Japan, last night shortly before 10 p.m. Japan time, Pentagon press operations director Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said today.
- Government 'trade-ins' help Corps modernize gear for fleet USMC News 13 Dec 2016 -- Marine Corps Systems Command's Combat Support Systems is exploring ways to get Marines the equipment they need faster and at no additional cost.
- Carderock Answers Call to Protect Marine Life with Newly-Commissioned Ballast Water Research Laboratory NNS 13 Dec 2016 -- Traveling across the globe from port to port, the U.S. Navy fleet transports Sailors and Marines, aircraft, and supplies.
- Taking EU-NATO cooperation to a new level - Joint Op-Ed by President of the European Council, Donald Tusk, President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg NATO 13 Dec 2016 -- Rising from the ashes of World War II, NATO and what is now the European Union were created with one goal: to prevent the horrors of another war in Europe.
- China, US hold joint military exercise under Rules for Unplanned Encounters at Sea People's Daily 13 Dec 2016 -- A joint military exercise was held on Dec. 9 (local time) at a port in San Diego, joined by Chinese naval ships and American Bunker Hill Cruise. The exercise was in accordance with the Rules for China-U.S. Unplanned Encounters at Sea, as well as the Safety Code of Conduct on China-U.S. Encounters at Sea and in Air.
- Government of Kuwait - Recapitalization of 218 M1A2 Tanks and Related Equipment and Support DSCA 13 Dec 2016 -- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Kuwait for recapitalization of 218 M1A2 tanks and related equipment, support, and training. The estimated cost is $1.7 billion. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on December 12, 2016.
- Serbia Says Russia To Provide Arms To Counter Alleged Threat From Croatia RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Amid rising tensions between Serbia and Croatia, Serbian Foreign Minister Ivica Dacic has said that Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic will visit Moscow later this month to discuss the possible donation of four MiG-29 jets and other unspecified military equipment.
- Iranian Army unveils new indigenous combat, reconnaissance drones Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- The Iranian Army's Ground Forces have unveiled two domestically-designed and -manufactured drones on the final day of major military exercises code-named Mohammad Rasoulallah IV (Mohammad, the Messenger of God IV) in southeastern Iran.
- Iran, South Africa sign MoU to boost defense, military ties Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Iran and South Africa have signed a memorandum of understanding to boost defense and military cooperation and promote regional and international peace and stability.
- Pakistan Forms Special Maritime Force to Secure Chinese-built Port, Projects VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- Pakistan has inaugurated a special maritime force to ensure security of its new Chinese-built Gwadar port, which is central to a multi-billion dollar economic cooperation agreement between the two countries.
- US cancels transfer of munitions to Saudi Arabia: Report Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Washington has canceled the transfer of some arms to Saudi Arabia, amid worldwide criticism about civilian deaths and destruction from the Kingdom's military aggression in Yemen.
- US Halts Sale of Some Arms to Saudi Arabia VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- The United States will halt the planned sale of precision-guided weapons to Saudi Arabia, a U.S. official said, in response to concerns over Saudi military practices in the Yemeni civil war, which has claimed the lives of thousands of civilians.
- Taiwan to deal with Chinese aircraft encroachments 'fearlessly': MND CNA 13 Dec 2016 -- In the event that a Chinese military aircraft enters Taiwan's air space, the ROC military will handle the situation "fearlessly without evasion or weakness," a Ministry of National Defense (MND) official said on Tuesday.
- Press Briefing by Press Secretary Josh Earnest and Special Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL, Brett McGurk , 12/13/16 The White House 13 Dec 2016
- December 13, 2016 - U.S. Department of State Daily Press Briefing US Dept. of State 13 Dec 2016
- The vulnerable 'must be our first priority,' says Ban, calling on donors to support UN emergency fund UN News 13 Dec 2016 -- At a high-level pledging conference in New York today on the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), the UN is seeking at Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's request, an unprecedented $1 billion by 2018 – a stark increase since its 2005 establishment.
- Islamic State's 'Battle Ready' Fighters Hit New Low VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- Under pressure from unrelenting airstrikes and increasingly capable forces on the ground, the Islamic State terror group is having trouble mustering a fighting force capable of holding onto its self-declared caliphate.
- Syria's offensive in Aleppo has ended: Russia UN envoy Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Russia has announced that the Syrian government's military operations to free the city of Aleppo have come to an end.
- Syria says E Aleppo may be liberated 'at any moment' Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- The Syrian army says it can announce full recapture of the eastern part of Aleppo "at any moment" as the pro-government forces advance on the ground, tightening the noose around foreign-backed terrorists in the strategic northwestern city.
- Syria establishing full control over Aleppo, Turkey wants safe evacuation of militants Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- As Syrian troops are about to reestablish full government control over Syria's second-largest city of Aleppo, Turkey has prepared a meeting with Russia to discuss the safe passage of the militants and out of the flashpoint city.
- US protecting Nusra terrorists to use them to topple Assad: Russia Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says the United States is seeking to protect the Takfiri al-Nusra Front terrorist group and use it as a tool to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
- Syrian Ally Russia Touts Aleppo Evacuation Deal VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- Syria's Russia-backed government and rebels in Aleppo fighting to oust it announced Tuesday that the two sides had reached a deal to facilitate the withdrawal of opposition fighters and tens of thousands of civilians from the war-ravaged city.
- 'We Are Being Killed': Desperate Calls From Aleppo As Assad Regime Closes In RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Some of the tens of thousands of citizens in eastern neighborhoods of the devastated northern Syrian city of Aleppo still controlled by rebels opposed to President Bashar al-Assad have been sharing "final messages" and calls for help on social media.
- Russia Says Aleppo Battle Over, UN Says Civilians Being Executed RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Russia's United Nations Ambassador Vitaly Churkin says the Syrian government military offensive in Aleppo, backed by Russia and Iran, is over and that an agreement has been struck for rebel fighters for the safe evacuation of the city.
- Russia, U.S. Trade Barbs After Syria Loses Palmyra To IS RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Russia and the United States traded blame over Syria's loss of Palmyra to the Islamic State (IS) extremist group for a second time over the weekend.
- 'It is past time for you to act' to end carnage in Aleppo, UN chief tells emergency Security Council session UN News 13 Dec 2016 -- Aleppo should represent the end of the quest for military victory, not the start of a broader military campaign in a country already ravaged beyond all recognition by five years of war, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told an emergency meeting of the Security Council today, calling on the 15-member body to "do all we can to stop the carnage" and ensure that all the parties in the "wretched" conflict seek an inclusive political resolution.
- Rebels: Aleppo Evacuation Deal Reached With Syrian Regime VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- Rebel fighters and the Syrian government have reached an agreement to allow the evacuation of civilians and opposition fighters from eastern Aleppo, as Russia says the Assad regime has ended its offensive against the city.
- Russian Ground Troops, Including Chechens, Reportedly Fighting in Syria VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- The head of the southern Russian region of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, has denied media reports that he deployed troops to Syria to fight on the side of President Bashar al-Assad. Meanwhile, the Kremlin and the Federation Council, the upper chamber of Russia's parliament, have been forced to explain footage of Russian forces fighting in Syria recently aired during a prime-time TV show.
- 35k Iraqi kids flee Mosul in almost 2 months: UN Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) estimates that some 35,000 children have escaped from Mosul since mid-October, when the Iraqi army launched a major offensive to retake the northern city from Daesh terrorists.
- UN human rights report urges end to 'unimaginable abuse' of migrants in Libya UN News 13 Dec 2016 -- A joint report launched today by the United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) citied "unimaginable" human rights violations and abuses of migrants in Libya as a result of the breakdown in the crisis-riven country's justice system.
- Myanmar military behind torching of Rohingya villages: HRW Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Human Rights Watch says evidence shows Myanmar's military is behind the torching of villages belonging to persecuted Rohingya Muslims in Rakhine State, urging the government to allow aid agencies and media into the troubled region.
- HRW: Myanmar Military Burned Hundreds of Rohingya Buildings VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- The government and military of Myanmar are responsible for burning down hundreds of buildings in the Rakhine State during the past three months as retribution for militant attacks on security forces, according to a report from Human Rights Watch.
- Famine may have killed 2,000 people in northeastern Nigeria: Report Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- More than 2,000 people may have died of famine this year across the militancy-riddled areas of northeastern Nigeria, a report says.
- Top spy agency does not endorse CIA analysis on Russia hacks Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- The office overseeing all 17 US spy agencies has not embraced a CIA assessment that Russia intervened in the 2016 presidential election to help Republican Donald Trump win the race.
- US Senate panel to hold hearing on Russia hacking in January Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- A panel in the US Senate is set to hold a hearing on allegations of Russian hacking in favor of GOP candidate Donald Trump in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.
- U.S. Electors Demand Briefing On Russian-Meddling Claim Before Voting RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Some of the U.S. electors who are charged with determining the next president in a vote next week have called for a briefing to detail evidence behind a finding that Russia intervened to help Donald Trump win the November 8 popular vote.
- Calls for Probes Into Apparent Russian Cyber Meddling in US Election Cross Party Lines VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- After years of political acrimony, some top U.S. Republican congressional leaders and President Barack Obama have finally agreed on how to approach a burgeoning issue confronting Washington: apparent Russian cyber meddling to influence the U.S. presidential election.
- Rex Tillerson, Trump's Pick For Secretary Of State, On Russia, Iran, Climate Change RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- By tapping ExxonMobil chief Rex Tillerson as his nominee for secretary of state, U.S. President-elect Donald Trump is sending a strong signal that he intends to seriously pursue his campaign pledge of seeking a rapprochement with Russia.
- Trump Picks ExxonMobil CEO Tillerson As Secretary Of State Nominee RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- U.S. President-elect Donald Trump has formally announced that ExxonMobil chairman and CEO Rex Tillerson is his nominee to serve as secretary of state, drawing support from prominent Republicans but also criticism from U.S. lawmakers over the oil executive's longstanding ties to Russia..
- Trump won't rule out lifting Russia sanctions: Aide Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- An important member of the incoming Donald Trump administration says the United States might not keep sanctions against Russia in place under the new president.
- U.S. remains "firmly committed" to one-China policy: White House People's Daily 13 Dec 2016 -- The White House said on Monday the United States remains "firmly committed" to one-China policy.
- Envoy: Iran has fully implemented its commitments under JCPOA IRNA 13 Dec 2016 -- Iranian permanent ambassador to the United Nations says while the Islamic Republic of Iran has fully implemented its commitments, as verified by the IAEA and acknowledged by all JCPOA participants, other parties are also obliged to refrain from any action inconsistent with its letter, spirit, and intent.
- President assigns FM to take legal action against US over JCPOA breach IRNA 13 Dec 2016 -- Following delays to implement the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action by the US and breach of the deal by extension of Iran Sanctions Act, President Hassan Rouhani on Tuesday assigned Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to take legal action against the US.
- Rouhani assigns AEOI chief to manufacture atomic propeller for ships IRNA 13 Dec 2016 -- Following delays to implement the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action by the US and breach of the deal by extension of Iran Sanctions Act, President Hassan Rouhani on Tuesday assigned chief of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran to manufacture atomic propeller for ships.
- Zarif: Iran has protested to EU over breach of JCPOA by US IRNA 13 Dec 2016 -- Foreign Minister Moahmmad Javad Zarif said on Tuesday that Iran has sent two letters to EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini to protest the US breach of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action.
- President Rouhani commands Zarif, Salehi to pursue breach of JCPOA by US ISNA 13 Dec 2016 -- Iran's President hassan Rouhnai commanded the foreign minister and the Atomic Energy Organization Head to legally pursu the breach of nucler agreement by the US.
- Iran has contingency plans for JCPOA violations: Velayati Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- A senior Iranian official says Tehran has prepared contingency plans for responding to any manner of violation of its nuclear deal with the world powers.
- Iran Increasingly Sees IS as Threat to Islamic Republic VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- In an unusual display of public candor, Iranian authorities have said in recent speeches that Islamic State infiltrators are becoming a growing threat to the Islamic Republic.
- Navalny Announces He Will Seek Russian Presidency RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Prominent Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny has announced he intends to run for president in an election due in March 2018, potentially setting up a contest against longtime leader Vladimir Putin.
- Sans Serif: Western Sanctions Hit Russia In An Unlikely Place RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Need more evidence that the Western sanctions imposed on Russia for its annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula are hitting Moscow right where it hurts?
- Gambia forces raid office of electoral commission Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Gambian military forces have taken over the office of the Independent Electoral Commission amid a dispute over the result of a recent presidential election.
- Gambian Ruling Party Asks Court to Void Election Results VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- Members of Gambia's ruling party asked the supreme court Tuesday to void December 1 election results, following their leader's loss.
- Taiwan wants good relations with U.S., stable cross-strait ties CNA 13 Dec 2016 -- The goal of Taiwan's foreign policy is to build good relations with the international community and maintain a stable cross-Taiwan Strait relationship, the Presidential Office said Tuesday.
- China will firmly protect its legitimate interests and multilateral trade system People's Daily 13 Dec 2016 -- Fifteen years have passed since China officially joined the WTO on December 11, 2001. Over the years, China, as the biggest developing country in the world, has been committed to liberalization and facilitation of global trade and investment and engaging in economic globalization. China also participated in, protected and contributed to the multilateral trade system by observing WTO rules and fulfilling its promises and responsibilities.
- No new chapters on Turkey's accession bid: EU Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- The European Union says it will not take up further policy areas - also called "chapters" - needed for Turkey's membership of the bloc due to concerns over the Ankara government's crackdown following an abortive military coup in July.
- Turkish authorities detain two female pro-Kurdish lawmakers Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Turkish authorities have arrested two pro-Kurdish lawmakers for alleged links to Kurdish militants.
- Turkey Jails Record Number of Journalists in Post-coup Crackdown VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- There are at least 81 journalists imprisoned in Turkey, which is more than are jailed in any other country, and accounts for almost one third of all imprisoned journalists worldwide.
- Savchenko Quits Ukrainian Party, But Plans To Continue Politics RFE/RL 13 Dec 2016 -- Ukraine's Batkivshchyna (Fatherland) Party said on December 13 that Ukrainian lawmaker Nadia Savchenko resigned from the political party at the end of October.
- DRC Political Talks Mediated By Catholic Church VOA 13 Dec 2016 -- Negotiations between President Joseph Kabila's political alliance and the Congolese opposition got under way Tuesday in Kinshasa, with the Catholic Church mediating.
- New Lithuanian cabinet sworn in amid defense, social fears Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- The cabinet of Lithuania's Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis has been sworn into office in the country's parliament following the surprise election victory of his Peasants and Green Union Party (LPGU) in October.
- Former Guinean Minister of Mines Charged with Receiving and Laundering $8.5 Million in Bribes from Chinese Companies US Dept. of Justice 13 Dec 2016 -- The former Minister of Mines and Geology of the Republic of Guinea was arrested and charged today with laundering proceeds from bribes that he allegedly received from two Chinese companies that are part of a Chinese conglomerate in exchange for official actions he took to secure valuable mining rights for the conglomerate.
- Venezuela closes border with Colombia over currency smuggling Press TV 13 Dec 2016 -- Venezuela's president has ordered a three-day closure of the border with Colombia in a bid to fight "mafias" involved in currency smuggling amid soaring inflation in the South American state.
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