29 December 2016 Military News
- OIF / OND / OEF / OIR / OFS Casualty Update 29 Dec 2016 [PDF]
- Strikes Target ISIL Terrorists in Syria, Iraq AFPS 29 Dec 2016 -- U.S. and coalition military forces continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria and Iraq yesterday, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.
- Coalition Strike Results in Possible Civilian Casualties AFPS 29 Dec 2016 -- Today, during coalition operations to liberate Mosul, Iraq, a coalition airstrike struck a van carrying Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant fighters observed firing an SPG-9 recoilless rifle before loading the weapon in the van and driving off, according to a Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve news release.
- US: Senior IS Leader Killed in Syria VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- U.S. officials say a key leader of Islamic State in its de facto capital of Raqqa, Syria was killed by a coalition airstrike this week, confirming earlier reports.
Defense Policy / Programs
- JSTARS Recap program takes next step with RFP release AFNS 29 Dec 2016 -- The Air Force is well on its way to replacing a critical airborne battle management command and control weapon system with the Dec. 28, 2016, release of the development request for proposal, or RFP, for the Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System, or JSTARS Recapitalization program.
- Top 10 Army modernization efforts of 2016 Army News 29 Dec 2016 -- Supporting the fight around the globe means providing Soldiers with the most advanced technology available.
- A chance to exercise capabilities as a fully integrated Navy, Marine Corps Team during Alligator Dagger USMC News 29 Dec 2016 -- Marines and Sailors of the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group/11th Marine Expeditionary Unit concluded Exercise Alligator Dagger with a nighttime helo-borne raid in Djibouti, Dec. 21, 2016.
- Last US Ship Transferred to ROK Navy Decommissioned in Ceremony Highlighting Naval Partnership NNS 29 Dec 2016 -- The Republic of Korea Navy (ROKN) decommissioned the ROKN ship Pyeongtaek (ATS-27), Dec. 28, closing the final chapter on the last U.S. ship transferred to the ROK Navy.
- Russian Army Gets First Batch of Brand New Tornado-S Rocket Artillery Systems Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- The army has received the first batch of Russia's newest deadly multiple launch rocket system, the Tornado-S. An upgrade to the formidable Tornado 9A52-4, the Tornado-S includes a new automated guidance and fire control system, improved rounds, and other upgrades.
- Iran has broken grandeur of hegemonic powers: IRGC deputy commander IRNA 29 Dec 2016 -- Deputy Commander of Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Brigadier-General Hossein Salami said on Thursday that Iran has broken grandeur of the hegemonic powers.
- Jogging apps pose threat to China's armed forces People's Daily 29 Dec 2016 -- A military base in Fujian Province has blocked all GPS services to smartphones after a soldier unknowingly revealed his location by sharing his jogging progress through an app.
- Law to prevent spying by retired military personnel passes 1st reading CNA 29 Dec 2016 -- A draft amendment to the Republic of China (Taiwan) Veterans Assistance Act, which is aimed at preventing Taiwanese retired military personnel from spying for foreign nations, passed its first reading in the Legislature on Thursday.
- After Nuke-Capable Missile Test, India Official Lashes Out at Beijing Criticism Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- In the wake of Beijing's threats to bring up New Delhi's test-firing of a nuclear-capable intercontinental ballistic missile Agni-V at the UN Security Council, a senior Indian air force official said regional partners should not discuss what India is doing unless it is prohibited, a subject that would ostensibly include nuclear proliferation.
- Oman, Iran's Closest Gulf Ally, Signals Change By Joining Saudi Alliance RFE/RL 29 Dec 2016 -- Oman, Iran's closest ally in the Persian Gulf region, has signaled that it may be changing course by joining a Saudi-led coalition of Muslim countries fighting terrorism.
- Oman Joins Saudi-Led Coalition Against Terrorism Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- Oman has joined the anti-terrorism coalition of Muslim nations led by Saudi Arabia, according to a letter sent to Saudi authorities.
- China's Artificial Islands No Cause for Concern in Philippines - Duterte Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- Rodrigo Duterte, the president of Philippines stated that China's artificial islands in the South China Sea waters were not a cause of concern for Philippines.
- Yemeni forces shoot down Saudi Apache helicopter in Najran Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Yemeni forces have shot down a Saudi Apache helicopter in the kingdom's southern Najran Province in fresh attacks in response to Riyadh's deadly military aggression.
- Turkey: No joint operation with Russia in Syria Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu says his country is not involved in any joint military operation with Russia in Syria's northern province of Aleppo.
- Nationwide Syrian Cease-fire Begins VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- Reports from Syria say violent clashes broke out less than two hours after the start of a nationwide cease-fire that began at midnight Friday, local time.
- Putin, Assad Discuss Syrian Ceasefire, Astana Talks in Phone Call Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin and Syrian President Bashar Assad "praised agreements on nationwide ceasefire and the transition to the political process, which have been mediated by Russia and Turkey," according to the Kremlin press service.
- Syrian Democratic Front Unites Internal Opposition Groups, Including Kurds Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- The newly-created Syrian Democratic Front consists of various political irgranizations, including Committee for National Democratic Action in Syria, the Syria National Dialogue Committee and a Kurdish group, according to the Front's spokeswoman Mais Krydee.
- Syrian Command Announces Full Nationwide Ceasefire Starting Friday Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- 'Following the victories and successes' of the Syrian goverment forces, the army command declares a nationwide ceasefire in the country.
- European states must stop backing Syria terrorists: Assad Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has called on European states to stop their support for Takfiri terrorists and recognize the Syrian nation's right to decide its own fate.
- Russia jets conduct anti-terror airstrikes in Syria's al-Bab: Dogan Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- For the first time since launching its anti-terror aerial campaign in Syria, Russian warplanes have reportedly hit Daesh targets around the city of al-Bab, where Turkey and its allied militants are allegedly fighting the terrorist group.
- Syrian army announces halt to fighting by midnight Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- The Syrian military has announced a nationwide halt to fighting starting at midnight, in a move that could promote the diplomatic efforts aimed at ending years of Takfiri violence in the Arab state.
- Putin Says Syria Cease-Fire Deal Signed, Russia And Turkey 'Guarantors' RFE/RL 29 Dec 2016 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin says the Syrian government and its opponents have signed an agreement on a nationwide cease-fire and a declaration expressing willingness to begin peace talks.
- Turkey's Role in Syria Cease-fire Raises Questions VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- Turkey and Russia negotiated intensely throughout December to reach a deal on a cease-fire in Syria. But the two countries still back opposite sides in the fight, which raises questions for Ankara's role in reaching a lasting peace agreement.
- Fate of Syria Cease-fire Unclear VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- Much remains unclear about the nationwide Syrian cease-fire Russian President Vladimir Putin announced Thursday – a truce that Moscow says can pave the way for Russian-brokered talks on a settlement of the five-year-long war.
- Abadi urges Iraq-Turkey cooperation based on 'respect for sovereignty' Press TV 30 Dec 2016 -- Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have held a telephone conversation, in what is seen as a major step towards settling a yearlong feud over the presence of Turkish forces in northern Iraq.
- Iraqi Forces Resume Mosul Offensive AFPS 29 Dec 2016 -- Iraqi security forces announced today that several elements of the Iraqi army, federal police and Counter Terrorism Service have initiated a simultaneous advance, with coalition air and artillery support, along three axes to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city.
- Iraqi Forces Resume Mosul Offensive - US-Led Coalition Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- According to US-led coalition, Iraqi Security Forces have renewed operations to liberate the city of Mosul from the Daesh.
- Iraqi forces launch fresh offensive to retake Mosul Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Iraqi troops have launched the second phase of a major operation to retake Mosul from Daesh terrorists, pushing deeper into eastern Mosul in a multi-pronged assault after a two-week lull.
- Principles for Middle East Peace US Dept. of State 29 Dec 2016 -- In his December 28, 2016 Remarks on Middle East Peace, Secretary of State John Kerry presented the Administration's view on the broad consensus that has emerged regarding principles for a final status agreement that could meet the needs of both sides, reflecting the Secretary's efforts and discussions with the parties and key stakeholders over the past four years.
- Kerry: Israel's settlements in Palestinian territory, violation of int'l law IRNA 29 Dec 2016 -- US Secretary of State John Kerry has criticized the Zionist regime's officials for their recent stance on the UN anti-settlement resolution (2334), stressing that settlement construction in the Palestinian lands is a violation of the international laws.
- Kerry: Israeli-Palestinian Two-state Solution in 'Serious Jeopardy' VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry unveiled broad guidelines Wednesday for an eventual peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians, warning that a two-state solution to the conflict is in "serious jeopardy."
- About 50,000 Rohingya Muslims flee from Myanmar to Bangladesh: Dhaka government Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Bangladesh's Foreign Ministry says some 50,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled persecution and violence in Myanmar to Bangladesh since early October.
- Colombia passes FARC amnesty law under peace deal Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- The Colombian congress has approved legislation that grants amnesty to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) as part of a recent peace deal between the country's government and the rebel group.
- Dozens of Boko Haram militants surrender in Niger Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Dozens of militants with the Takfiri Boko Haram terrorist group have surrendered to Nigerien authorities, less than a week after Nigeria announced that its troops captured the group's last key bastion in the country's northeast.
- New Video: Boko Haram Leader Says Group Is 'Safe' and 'Not Crushed' VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau has appeared in a video denying Nigerian government claims that the insurgent group has been chased out of its Sambisa forest stronghold.
- 4 troops killed in latest confrontation between Armenia, Azerbaijan Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- At least four soldiers have been killed in the latest round of confrontation between Armenia and Azerbaijan along the shared border of the two Caucasus countries.
- At Least Four Soldiers Said Killed In Armenia-Azerbaijan Clash RFE/RL 29 Dec 2016 -- Officials say at least four soldiers were killed and several others wounded in a border clash between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces early on December 29.
- UN aid wing cites 'deep concern' at surge in attacks on relief workers in Central African Republic UN News 29 Dec 2016 -- The United Nations relief wing today voiced deep concern at the resurgence of attacks against humanitarian workers in crisis-gripped Central African Republic (CAR).
- Press Call on the Administration Response to Russian Malicious Cyber Activity and Harassment The White House 29 Dec 2016
- Obama Set To Release Report To Congress On Alleged Russian Hacking Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- President Barack Obama said his administration will provide lawmakers a detailed analysis regarding allegations of Russian "efforts to interfere in our election" in addition to accusations of "malicious cyberactivity."
- US Imposes Sanctions on Russia for Alleged Hacking of Election Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- Despite a glaring lack of evidence to support allegations that Russia interfered in the US presidential election, the White House has announced that they will be imposing sanctions on the nation.
- Obama Hits Russia With New Sanctions for Election Hacking VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- President Barack Obama on Thursday hit Russia with new sanctions over its computer hacking and interference in the November presidential election and other Russian actions, including harassing U.S. diplomats in Moscow.
- Statement by the President on Actions in Response to Russian Malicious Cyber Activity and Harassment The White House 29 Dec 2016 -- "Today, I have ordered a number of actions in response to the Russian government's aggressive harassment of U.S. officials and cyber operations aimed at the U.S. election. These actions follow repeated private and public warnings that we have issued to the Russian government, and are a necessary and appropriate response to efforts to harm U.S. interests in violation of established international norms of behavior."
- FACT SHEET: Actions in Response to Russian Malicious Cyber Activity and Harassment The White House 29 Dec 2016 -- "Today, President Obama authorized a number of actions in response to the Russian government's aggressive harassment of U.S. officials and cyber operations aimed at the U.S. election in 2016. Russia's cyber activities were intended to influence the election, erode faith in U.S. democratic institutions, sow doubt about the integrity of our electoral process, and undermine confidence in the institutions of the U.S. government. These actions are unacceptable and will not be tolerated."
- Department of State Actions in Response to Russian Harassment US Dept. of State 29 Dec 2016 -- The State Department today declared persona non grata 35 Russian officials operating in the United States who were acting in a manner inconsistent with their diplomatic or consular status.
- Obama Hits Russia With New Sanctions VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- The Obama administration has hit Russia with new sanctions in response to Moscow's alleged hacking and interference in the November U.S. presidential elections.
- US Senators Call for Sanctions on Russia in Election Hacking VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- Key U.S. senators visiting eastern European allies have called for sanctions against Russia for interfering in the presidential election.
- Trump dismisses talk of imposing sanctions against Russia Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- US President-elect Donald Trump has turned down talk of imposing sanctions against Russia in response to Moscow's alleged interference in the November 8 election.
- Obama orders sanctions on Russia over alleged election interference Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- The United States has announced a series of economic sanctions against Russia over allegations that it interfered in the 2016 presidential election through cyber attacks.
- U.S. Expels 35 Russian Diplomats, Announces New Sanctions For Alleged Hacking RFE/RL 29 Dec 2016 -- The United States says it is expelling nearly three dozen Russian diplomats as it announced new economic sanctions and other punitive measures in response to alleged Russian hacking during the presidential election.
- U.S. Expected To Announce Measures Against Russia Over Election Hacking RFE/RL 29 Dec 2016 -- U.S. media report that the United States will soon announce retaliatory measures against Russia for allegedly leaking hacked U.S. Democratic e-mails during the presidential campaign in what the CIA and others believe was an effort to help Donald Trump win the election.
- Putin Will Determine Adequate Response to US Sanctions Sputnik 29 Dec 2016 -- Kremlin announced that Putin will determine adequate response to US sanctions.
- The Year The Collective Putin Died RFE/RL 29 Dec 2016 -- Sergei Ivanov and Viktor Ivanov have a lot in common. In addition to sharing a last name, both are KGB veterans, both are longtime cronies of Vladimir Putin - and both were thrown under the bus by the Kremlin leader this year.
- China warns US against allowing Taiwan leader's stopover Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Beijing has called on Washington to reject the Taiwanese leader's request to make a stopover in the United States in January and possibly meet the new administration.
- China to Launch Stringent New Anti-corruption System in Beijing, Two Other Provinces VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- China says it will soon launch a powerful anti-corruption system in the capital city of Beijing and the provinces of Shanxi and Zhejiang.
- UN experts applaud US decision to dismantle 'discriminatory and ineffective' counterterrorism programme UN News 29 Dec 2016 -- Two United Nations human rights experts welcomed a decision by the United States to dismantle a national registry program targeting people visiting from countries that are home to active terrorist groups, a program that the experts labelled "discriminatory and ineffective."
- Tunisian forces bust al-Qaeda-linked terrorist cell near Sousse Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Tunisian security forces have dismantled a "terrorist cell" affiliated to the Takfiri al-Qaeda militant group that poised to carry out attacks in the North African country.
- FSB arrests suspected Daesh-linked terrorists planning attacks Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Russia's domestic security agency says its forces have taken into custody several suspected Daesh-linked terrorists, who were planning to carry out terror attacks around the capital, Moscow.
- India's Finance Minister Calls Currency Ban a Success; Critics Disagree VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- India's finance minister, Arun Jaitley, has called the government's controversial currency ban a success, citing a jump in revenue collection.
- Israel's attorney general orders criminal probe against Netanyahu Press TV 29 Dec 2016 -- Israel's Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit has approved the opening of a full criminal investigation into the financial activities of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu amid allegations of bribery and fraud.
- Japan Criticized by East Asian Neighbors for Visit to Controversial WWII Shrine VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- Japan is being roundly criticized by neighboring countries after its top military official Thursday visited a controversial shrine that honors its war dead, including convicted war criminals.
- Ukrainians Reflect Bitterly On 'Betrayed Hopes' Of Euromaidan RFE/RL 29 Dec 2016 -- Between classes in Kolkata, India, 17-year-old Svyatoslav Yurash was glued to a video stream of almost a million of his compatriots rallying in Ukraine's capital when he decided to join the protest that would soon swell into a revolt.
- Somalia: Welcoming new Federal Parliament, Ban urges completion of electoral process UN News 29 Dec 2016 -- United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has welcomed the inauguration of the new Federal Parliament of Somalia on 27 December and warmly congratulated the people of Somalia on this historic achievement in their quest for universal suffrage by 2020.
- South Africa Ruling Party Looks to Zuma's Successor VOA 29 Dec 2016 -- In South Africa, the next presidential election is still over two years away but the possible candidates are already a hot topic of national debate after the turbulent political ups and downs of the past year.
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