22 December 2018 Military News
- US envoy Brett McGurk resigns over Trump's announcement of troop withdrawal from Syria Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- The US State Department's senior envoy to the so-called anti-Daesh coalition, Brett McGurk, has resigned over President Donald Trump's decision to pull troops out of Syria.
- 'A Blow to Morale': Afghanistan Generals Bemoan US Withdrawal Plans Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- Afghanistan military forces voiced concern that rumoured US withdrawal from the country would complicate their negotiations with the Taliban* and embolden Daesh** terrorists.
- Reactions Mixed to US Drawdown in Afghanistan VOA 22 Dec 2018 -- Reactions are mixed to reports in the U.S. media that U.S. President Donald Trump is mulling over withdrawing within weeks roughly half of the more than 14,000 U.S. troops from Afghanistan.
- Taliban defeated in northern Afghanistan IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- Afghanistan Army in a statement announced that Taliban was defeated in Faryab Province north of the country and lost 23 forces.
- Afghan Leaders Downplay Impact Of U.S. Pullout, But Military Officials Fret RFE/RL 22 Dec 2018 -- Bulgaria's Defense Ministry has asked the government to begin direct talks with the United States about purchasing F-16 fighter jets to replace its aging Soviet-designed MiG-29 warplanes.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Future USS Paul Ignatius Successfully Completes Acceptance Trials NNS 22 Dec 2018 -- The future USS Paul Ignatius (DDG 117) successfully completed acceptance trials Dec. 20, returning to Huntington Ingalls Industries' (HII) Pascagoula shipyard after spending two days at sea in the Gulf of Mexico.
- Russia warns of global conflict if US withdraws from INF treaty Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- Russia has warned that the potential scrapping of the Cold War-era nuclear arms agreement by the United States may lead to a global conflict after a proposal by Moscow for preserving the pact was rejected in a United Nations vote.
- US provides Ukraine with additional $10 million in military aid Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- The United States says it will provide an additional $10 million in military aid to Ukraine to boost its naval capability, after Russia seized three Ukrainian navy ships off the coast of Crimea last month.
- U.S., Britain Vow To Support Ukraine's Navy After November Kerch Strait Attack RFE/RL 22 Dec 2018 -- The United States says it will provide an additional $10 million in military financing to Ukraine to help bolster its navy after Russia captured three of Kyiv's ships at sea in late November.
- Russian Embassy Slams UK Over Warship's Ukraine Visit 'Sending Message' to Putin Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- The deployment of a hydrographic survey ship, the HMS Echo, which docked in Odessa on 19 December, to Ukraine was announced by UK Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson last month.
- US to Boost Funding for Ukrainian Navy After Kerch Row With Russia Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- The United States is providing Kiev with additional funding to build up its navy in light of the Kerch strait incident, the State Department said in a press release.
- Defence Secretary reaffirms support to Ukraine in the face of Russian aggression UK MOD 22 Dec 2018 -- The Defence Secretary visited the crew of HMS Echo docked at the Ukrainian port of Odesa
- PLA Daily: Top ten highlights of China's military diplomacy 2018 People's Daily 22 Dec 2018 -- On Dec. 22, PLA Daily published an article summarizing the ten major highlights of China's military diplomacy in 2018.
- China Conducts First Test of Russian S-400 Air Defence Systems - Reports Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- China was the first foreign state to sign a $3 billion contract in 2015 to buy two cutting edge air defence systems from Russia, which arrived in the Asian state in May 2018.
- IRGC's maneuver in Persian Gulf ends successfully IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The maneuver of 'Great Prophet 12(PBUP)', which began on December 15th with the deployment of forces from the provinces of Fars, Kerman and Tehran to the Persian Gulf and Qeshm Island, today ended successfully.
- Exercise of 'Great Prophet 12' (PBUH) massive response to claims of enemies IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) says the military drills of the 'Great Prophet 12 (PBUH)' is in fact a decisive answer to all absurd claims of the enemies.
- Iran's new cyber achievements unveiled IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- New achievements in electronic, telecommunications and cyber-defense of Iran's Defense Ministry were unveiled at the presence of the Defense Minister at the Company of Electronic Industries.
- Commander: Armed forces ready to fight threats IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The armed forces are not only monitoring and evaluating enemy's moves and threats, but also they have the readiness to fight any threat, a senior commander said Saturday.
- IRGC starts Great Prophet-12 military drills in Persian Gulf IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The final stage of the 'Great Prophet-12' military exercise launched in the Persian Gulf, southern Iran on Saturday.
- Final stage of "Great Prophet-12" drills kicks off ISNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The ground forces of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) kicked off the final stage of military drills named "Great Prophet-12" on Saturday in the Persian Gulf region, in southern parts of Iran.
- IRGC holds major drills, debuts 'offensive' component Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps holds the main and final stage of massive exercises in the Persian Gulf, launching an "offensive" component in Iran's defensive strategy for the first time.
- Iran's Revolutionary Guards Launch War Games In Persian Gulf RFE/RL 22 Dec 2018 -- Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has launched war games in the Persian Gulf, a day after a U.S. aircraft carrier entered the waterway amid rising tensions between Tehran and Washington.
- Iranian Ships Reportedly Fire Rockets Near US Aircraft Carrier in Persian Gulf Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- A US aircraft carrier sailed into the Persian Gulf on Friday amid Iranian threats to close the Strait of Hormuz, the only sea passage from the Gulf to the open ocean and strategic waterway linking Middle East crude producers to crucial world markets.
- Japan reports 'extremely dangerous' radar lock after unveiling record military budget Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- Japan has strongly protested to South Korea, saying a South Korean warship had locked its targeting radar on a Japanese surveillance aircraft.
- Turkey Won't Drop S-400 Deal Despite Trump's Promise to Sell Patriots - Report Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- The US has been attempting to thwart the Russian S-400 air defence systems' sale to Turkey ever since the contract was signed in December 2017, threatening to halt F-35 jet shipments to Ankara. In its latest attempt to dismantle the deal, the US State Department approved the sale of US-made Patriot systems to Turkey.
- SpaceX Pospones Launch of US Air Force's First GPS III Satellite...Again Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- SpaceX made another attempt of launching a Falcon 9 rocket for the US Air Force GPS III mission. The launch was initially scheduled for December 18 and was later postponed due to technical and weather issues.
- Yemeni Government Welcomes UN Security Council's Resolution 2451 on Yemen SPA 22 Dec 2018 -- Yemeni Government welcomed UN Security Council's Resolution 2451 which reaffirmed the international community's commitment to the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Yemen.
- UN Security Council authorizes monitors to observe ceasefire in Yemen's Hudaydah Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has voted unanimously to authorize the deployment of UN monitors to observe the implementation of a newly-agreed ceasefire in Yemen's vital port of Hudaydah and the pullout of rival forces from the flashpoint area.
- UN advance team arrives in Yemen's Aden to monitor ceasefire in Hudaydah: Officials Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- An advance team of the United Nations has arrived in Yemen with the task of monitoring a fragile ceasefire in the Red Sea port city of Hudaydah recently agreed by the two warring parties, namely Yemen's Houthi Ansarullah movement and the country's former Saudi-backed government, local officials say.
- Warring parties in Yemen must fully respect Hudaydah ceasefire: UNSC IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The United Nations Security Council on Friday endorsed the agreement reached at the recent UN-backed talks in Sweden, and authorized the deployment of an advance team to facilitate the monitoring and implementation of the Stockholm Agreement.
- UNSC adopts 1st resolution for establishing peace in Yemen IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The United Nations Security Council has ratified its first resolution named 2451 to support Stockholm agreement and establishing truce in important Yemeni ports.
- UN to Deploy Additional Teams in Yemen to Assist Ceasefire Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- The United Nations will send an additional group of observers to monitor the implementation of the ceasefire agreement in the Yemeni port city of Al Hudaydah, UN Spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said in a press briefing on Friday.
- US-coalition attacks kill 30 civilians in eastern Syria IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The US-led coalition's attack on Deir ez-Zor Province, eastern Syria has killed 30 civilians on Friday night, French media reported.
- France vows support for Syria militants amid US pullout Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- A French official says his country has pledged backing for the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a US-backed anti-Damascus alliance of mainly Kurdish militants, amid the planned withdrawal of American troops from the Arab country.
- France Reportedly Promised Kurdish SDF Support Amid US Withdrawal from Syria Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- The White House has announced the withdrawal of its troops from Syria within the next 100 days with President Trump stating that the US had managed to defeat Daesh* and thus should no longer stay in the Arab Republic.
- US jets kill dozens in Syria after Trump announces pullout Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- The US and its allies have conducted air raids on Syria's eastern Dayr al-Zawr province, killing more than two dozen people, including eight children.
- 'All Quiet on Southern Front': Rebels Claim US Troops Still Present in al-Tanf Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- The White House announced the withdrawal of the country's troops from Syria within next the 100 days, stating that with the defeat of Daesh* forces in the region their mission was finally over.
- Erdogan Phone Call on Syria Triggered Mattis's Resignation – Reports Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- US President Donald Trump took to Twitter earlier this week to announce that Defence Secretary James Mattis would resign on 28 February 2019.
- Hamas slams Abbas plan to dissolve Palestinian parliament Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas has slammed a plan by President of the Palestinian Authority Mahmoud Abbas to dissolve the parliament, saying the move will only add to the internal divisions between the Palestinian factions.
- Hamas will not accept truncated Palestinian state in Gaza Strip, says spokesman Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- The Hamas resistance movement says it will not agree to the creation of a Palestinian state in the Gaza Strip, warning that US President Donald Trump's so-called "deal of the century" is aimed at the establishment of a Palestinian state in the impoverished coastal enclave only.
- Russia offers to host Palestine-Israel, Hamas-Fatah meetings Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- Russia has officially proposed to organize a meeting between chief Palestinian and Israeli officials as part of wider efforts to resolve the conflict between the two sides.
- Russian Fighter Jets Moved To Annexed Ukrainian Region RFE/RL 22 Dec 2018 -- More than a dozen advanced Russian fighter jets have arrived at a base in the Ukrainian region of Crimea, which Moscow occupied and annexed in 2014.
- 6 killed by Indian soldiers in new day of Kashmir unrest Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- On another deadly day in the disputed region of Kashmir, six people have been killed by Indian soldiers during an attack in the section of the region under the control of the New Delhi government.
- Over a dozen killed in al-Shabab attacks in Somalia Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- Al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabab militants have claimed two deadly attacks close to the presidential palace in the Somali capital Mogadishu.
- 15 Killed In Explosions in Somalia VOA 22 Dec 2018 -- Two explosions near the presidential palace in Somalia's capital have killed at least 15 people, including a prominent journalist.
- US Renames, Strengthens DHS's Nuclear Security Coordinating Office Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- The US Government is implementing new legislation to strengthen and expand the coordination of domestic security agencies and activities to defend against weapons of mass destruction (WMDs), President Donald Trump said in a statement.
- Doping Inspectors Say Denied Access To Russian Lab Data RFE/RL 22 Dec 2018 -- The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) says its inspectors were denied access to a Moscow laboratory's data as part of their investigation, and Russia's anti-doping agency is at risk of being suspended again.
- US presence in region, mistake from beginning: Iran's FM spox IRNA 22 Dec 2018 -- The presence of US troops in the region was from the outset a mistake and it has always been among the major destabilizing factors in the region, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Saturday.
- Iran: US troops 'wrong from start, source of tension' Press TV 22 Dec 2018 -- Iran says the US military presence in the region has been "wrong and a source of tension" after President Donald Trump announced plans to withdraw troops from Syria and Afghanistan.
- The Royal Court Announces the Death of Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud SPA 22 Dec 2018 -- Prince Talal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud died today and funeral prayers for the late prince will be performed here on Sunday following the afternoon prayers, at Imam Turki bin Abdullah Mosque, according to a statement announced by the Royal Court.
- China begins space-based broadband project People's Daily 22 Dec 2018 -- China launched a communications satellite on Saturday, marking the start of construction of a vast space-based communications network capable of covering the entire world with broadband internet service.
- China's first private rocket production base begins operation People's Daily 22 Dec 2018 -- China's first private carrier rocket production base has started operation in Huzhou, east China's Zhejiang Province, according to the Beijing-based rocket maker LandSpace.
- China Successfully Launches 1st Satellite of Newest Hongyun Project Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- China on 22 December successfully launched the first satellite of its Hongyun project, which seeks to create a network of communication satellites on the low Earth orbit in order to provide stable internet connection to the country's remote regions, the state-owned China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation (CASIC) said.
- Ukraine's President Signs Law Forcing Russia-Affiliated Church To Change Name RFE/RL 22 Dec 2018 -- Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has signed a law requiring the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) to change its name to one that reveals its affiliation with the Moscow-based Russian Orthodox Church.
- Poroshenko Signs Bill on Renaming Canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church Sputnik 22 Dec 2018 -- Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has signed into law a bill obliging the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) to change its name, presidential spokesman Svyatoslav Tsegolko said on Saturday.
- Sudan Protests Reportedly Spread to More Than a Half-Dozen Cities VOA 22 Dec 2018 -- Protests against price rises and the autocratic three-decade regime of President Omar Hassan al-Bashir spread Saturday in Sudan, amid reports of fresh casualties.
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