25 May 2021 Military News
- Update on withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan May 24, 2021 CENTCOM 25 May 2021 -- U.S. Central Command provides the following update on the orderly and responsible withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan, as of 10 a.m. on May 24, 2021.
- VOA Exclusive: Taliban Attach Conditions to Istanbul Conference Participation VOA 25 May 2021 -- The Afghan Taliban have decided upon three conditions to attend an eagerly awaited U.S.-proposed conference in Turkey: The conference must be short, the agenda should not include decision-making on critical issues, and the Taliban delegation should be low level, a senior Taliban leader told VOA Tuesday.
- US Completes Up to 25% of Afghan Withdrawal VOA 25 May 2021 -- The U.S. military estimates that it has completed up to a quarter of its pullout from Afghanistan.
- Afghanistan Retrograde Nearly One-Quarter Complete DoD News 25 May 2021 -- The U.S. plans to be completely out of Afghanistan by Sept. 11, 2021. U.S. Central Command announced today they estimate the withdrawal is now somewhere between 16% and 25% complete.
- Dozens Of Taliban Captives Freed In Western Afghanistan RFE/RL Gandhara 25 May 2021 -- Afghan officials say local commandos have released 41 people from a Taliban prison in the country's western province of Herat.
- Australia To Shutter Embassy In Afghanistan Due To Security Concerns RFE/RL Gandhara 25 May 2021 -- Australia says it will close its embassy in Afghanistan this week, citing "an increasingly uncertain security environment" as international troops exit the war-torn country.
- Australia shutting down Kabul embassy as troops pack to leave Afghanistan Press TV 25 May 2021 -- Driven by concerns over the security environment in Afghanistan growing 'increasingly uncertain,' Australia says it is shutting down its embassy in Kabul amid the ongoing withdrawal of foreign forces from the South Asian country.
- US military bases do not exist in Pakistan: Islamabad Press TV 25 May 2021 -- Islamabad has downplayed the increased military cooperation between American and Pakistani forces following the US military exit from Afghanistan.
- Pakistan Rules Out Military Bases for US Anti-Terror Afghan Operations VOA 25 May 2021 -- Pakistan dismissed Tuesday the possibility of allowing the United States to operate a military base on Pakistani territory or conduct "kinetic drone" operations against Afghanistan.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby Holds an Off-Camera Press Briefing DoD 25 May 2021
- Air Force update for COVID-19 US Air Force 25 May 2021
- U.S., Burundi reconnect with African Data Sharing Network AFRICOM 25 May 2021 -- Two U.S. Soldiers assigned to Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) provided updated communications equipment to the Burundi Army signal team in Bujumbura, Burundi, to reestablish the African Data Sharing Network.
- Staff talks allow U.S. Army to assist Peruvian Army's transformation, modernization Army News 25 May 2021 -- In 1827, the United States established diplomatic relations with Peru, and nearly 200 years later, the U.S. and Peru's strategic partnership continues to enhance security across the Western Hemisphere to collectively meet complex global challenges.
- Hurricane Hunters upgrade ARWO software US Air Force 25 May 2021 -- The 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron "Hurricane Hunters" aerial reconnaissance weather officer and loadmaster/dropsonde operator stations are being upgraded with hardware and software to increase their weather collecting capabilities.
- USS Theodore Roosevelt Returns from Deployment US Navy 25 May 2021 -- The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) returned to San Diego, May 25, marking the completion of its deployment to the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command area of responsibility.
- PATFORSWA Receives Two New Sentinel-Class U.S. Coast Guard Fast Response Cutters US Navy 25 May 2021 -- U.S. Coast Guard Sentinel-class fast response cutters (FRC) USCGC Charles Moulthrope (WPC 1141) and Robert Goldman (WPC 1142), arrived at their new homeport onboard Naval Support Activity Bahrain, May 25.
- USS Thomas Hudner Concludes Port Visit in Souda Bay US Navy 25 May 2021 -- The Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116), an element of the Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (IKE CSG), conducted a three-day scheduled port visit to Souda Bay, Greece, May 24, 2021.
- U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hamilton concludes operations with U.S. Navy Sixth Fleet US Navy 25 May 2021 -- The Legend-class national security cutter USCGC Hamilton (WMSL 753) transited out of the Mediterranean Sea, concluding the crew's recent operations in U.S. Navy Sixth Fleet's area of responsibility, May 24, 2021.
- U.S. and Russian Navies Hold Annual INCSEA Consultations in Moscow US Navy Press Release 25 May 2021 -- Delegations representing the U.S. and Russian Navies held the annual Prevention of Incidents On and Over the Waters Outside the Limits of the Territorial Sea (INCSEA) consultations on May 25, 2021, in Moscow.
- Secretary General discusses NATO Summit, Belarus, Ukraine with Estonian Prime Minister NATO 25 May 2021 -- Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg welcomed Prime Minister Kaja Kallas of Estonia to NATO headquarters on Tuesday (25 May 2021) to discuss preparations for the NATO Summit on 14 June. Mr Stoltenberg thanked Estonia for its strong support and commitment to the Alliance through its contributions to NATO missions and operations, its leadership on defence spending, and its provision of expertise to Allies and partners through the Cyber Centre of Excellence in Tallinn.
- PLA Navy conducts large-scale joint submarine rescue drill PLA Daily 25 May 2021 -- A naval search and rescue flotilla under the PLA Northern Theater Command , together with surface ships, helicopter units, and local maritime search and rescue forces, carried out a 74-hour uninterrupted multi-course drill in actual combat context in waters of the Yellow Sea as scheduled from May 17 to 20, aiming to test the troops' ability to perform submarine rescue mission and emergency treatment.
- Iran gains remarkable successes in land warfare area IRNA 25 May 2021 -- Minister of Defense Brigadier General Amir Hatami announced on Tuesday that Iran has achieved great successes in the areas of land warfare, anti-tank missiles, surface-to-surface missiles, smart weapons, guided bombs and tactical vehicles in recent years.
- Iran among top 5 submarine producers: Cmdr IRNA 25 May 2021 -- Iran's Navy Marine Rangers Commander Rear Admiral Morteza Darkhoran said on Tuesday that the country is among the top five nations in building submarines thanks to the knowledge and expertise of domestic forces.
- Iran's Army starts electronic warfare drill IRNA 25 May 2021 -- The Iranian Army started on Tuesday a large-scale military drill to practice electronic warfare tactics, this drill on electronic warfare is dubbed 'Separ-e-Aseman 1400' [Sky Shield 1400].
- Iran's Army kicks off electronic warfare exercise ISNA 25 May 2021 -- A joint drill dubbed "Separ-e-Aseman 1400" (Sky Shield 1400) was started on Tuesday with the participation of the strategic electronic warfare units of four branches of Iran's Army.
- Advancing Iran's missile power top priority at Defense Ministry: Brig. Gen. Hatami Press TV 25 May 2021 -- Iran's defense minister says advancing and further reinforcing the country's missile power is a top priority of his ministry.
- Iranian Army launches large-scale electronic warfare drill Press TV 25 May 2021 -- The Iranian Army has launched a large-scale aerial drill involving electronic warfare units and featuring the country's domestically-built air defense systems and equipment.
- 2 Turkish attack choppers to arrive in September: DND Philippine News Agency 25 May 2021 -- The Department of National Defense (DND) on Tuesday announced that the first two out of the six T129B "ATAK" helicopters acquired by the Philippines from Turkey will be delivered in September.
- 'Mysterious' airbase being built on island off Yemen linked to UAE Press TV 25 May 2021 -- A "mysterious" airbase being built on a volcanic island in the Strait of Bab al-Mandeb, off Yemen's southwestern coast and at the cusp of a key global maritime energy trade route, has been traced to the United Arab Emirates, even though the country has claimed to have disengaged from Yemen militarily.
- Remarks by President Biden Before Marine One Departure The White House 25 May 2021
- Press Briefing by Press Secretary Jen Psaki, May 25, 2021 The White House 25 May 2021
- Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 25 May 2021
- Addressing the growing risks of famine and attacks on humanitarian personnel in conflict situations UK FCDO 25 May 2021 -- Statement by Sonia Farrey, UK Political Coordinator at the UN, at the Security Council open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict
- Tools to protect civilians in conflict exist, but not the will to apply them, Lowcock tells Security Council UN News 25 May 2021 -- The international legal framework and tools are all there to protect civilians caught up in conflict, and now it's time for governments and armed groups to apply them, the UN relief chief told the Security Council on Tuesday.
- Turkey Under Fire Over Military Presence in Libya VOA 25 May 2021 -- International pressure is growing on Turkey over its military presence in Libya.
- Foreign Secretary visits Israel and Occupied Palestinian Territories (May 2021) UK FCDO 25 May 2021 -- Statement by Sonia Farrey, UK Political Coordinator at the UN, at the Security Council open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict
- Secretary Antony J. Blinken at a Press Availability US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- Secretary Antony J. Blinken with Palestinian Civil Society Leaders US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- Secretary Antony J. Blinken and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas Statements to the Press US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- Secretary Blinken's Meeting with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- Secretary Blinken's Meeting with Israeli Alternate Prime Minister Gantz US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- Secretary Blinken's Meeting with Israeli Foreign Minister Ashkenazi US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- Secretary Antony J. Blinken and Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi Before Their Meeting US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- Secretary Antony J. Blinken and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Statements to the Press US Dept. of State 25 May 2021
- China's 17-Point Agreement With Tibet Led to Oppression by Beijing: Experts Radio Free Asia 25 May 2021 -- A controversial 17-Point Agreement between China and Tibet leading to Beijing's takeover of the independent Himalayan country was signed by Tibet in 1951 under duress, and was quickly followed by violations of its terms by China, rights groups and experts said on the 70th anniversary of the document's signing.
- In Nigeria, Rising Insecurity Leads to Growing Separatist Calls VOA 25 May 2021 -- Escalating insecurity and communal violence in Nigeria appear to be strengthening separatist movements across the country. Among those movements is the Indigenous People of Biafra, a group that advocates an independent state in a part of Nigeria that tried to break away more than 50 years ago.
- Counter ISIS Finance Group Leaders Issue Joint Statement US Treasury 25 May 2021 -- The Counter ISIS Finance Group (CIFG) of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS held its fourteenth meeting on May 17-18, 2021, to discuss ongoing efforts to combat ISIS financing worldwide. The United States, Italy, and Saudi Arabia hosted this meeting via video conference, joined by over 50 member states, observers, and independent experts. The CIFG was established in January 2015 as one of five working groups of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS.
- U.S. Court Sentences Russian Cybercriminal To 30 Months In Prison RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- A U.S. court has sentenced a Russian citizen to 30 months in prison for his role in administering an online marketplace peddling stolen credit-card information and personal information to cybercriminals.
- Russian Lawmakers Take Step Toward Ban Of Navalny Supporters From All Elected Posts RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- Russia's lower house of parliament has approved the second reading of a bill that would ban supporters and members of "extremist" organizations from being elected to any post.
- Kremlin Critic Navalny Says Three More Criminal Cases Launched Against Him RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- Jailed Russian opposition politician Aleksei Navalny says three new criminal cases have been initiated against him.
- Statement by White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki on the Meeting Between President Joe Biden and President Vladimir Putin of Russia The White House 25 May 2021
- Biden-Putin Summit Set For June 16 Amid Escalating Tensions RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- U.S. President Joe Biden will meet his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, in Geneva on June 16 in what will be the first meeting of the two leaders since Biden took office.
- Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's remarks and answer to a media question at a joint news conference following talks with Minister for Foreign and European Affairs of Malta Evarist Bartolo, Sochi, May 25, 2021 Russia Ministry of Foreign Affairs 25 May 2021
- RFE/RL Investigation: How Russian Oil Companies Illegally Dump Massive Amounts Of Toxic Waste RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- Russian oil companies are illegally disposing of millions of tons of contaminated drilling waste, a practice that is wreaking environmental havoc by polluting northern rivers that drain into the Arctic Ocean, a new RFE/RL investigation has found.
- Moscow Court Fines Facebook, Google For Failing To Delete Content Banned In Russia RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- A Russian court has issued fines against Facebook and Google over their failure to delete content deemed by Moscow as illegal.
- Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Zhao Lijian's Regular Press Conference on May 25, 2021 PRC MofA 25 May 2021
- North Korean Capital Cracks Down on Illegal TVs to Prevent Access to South Korean Broadcasts Radio Free Asia 25 May 2021 -- North Korea has ordered residents of the capital Pyongang to report the number of televisions in each household to stop them from watching banned shows from prosperous, democratic South Korea, sources in the country told RFA.
- Seven Candidates Approved For Iran Presidential Vote, Rohani Allies Barred RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- An Iranian hard-line constitutional watchdog has approved seven candidates to run in next month's presidential election, leaving out several high-profile hopefuls allied to outgoing President Hassan Rohani.
- Iran announces final list of qualified candidates for presidential election ISNA 25 May 2021 -- Iran's Election Office of the Ministry of Interior announced on Tuesday the final list of candidates qualified by the Guardian Council for the 13th presidential election.
- After disqualification, Jahangiri says Constitutional Council bears all liabilities Press TV 25 May 2021 -- Iran's Vice President Es'haq Jahangiri, who has been disqualified by the country's Constitutional Council from running in the June 18 presidential election and who would have been the Reformist camp's top candidate, says the vetting body bears all liabilities arising from the rejection.
- Raeisi says negotiated quietly to secure qualification of more candidates Press TV 25 May 2021 -- Seyyed Ebrahim Raeisi, Iran's Judiciary chief and a candidate in the June 18 presidential election, says he negotiated quietly to secure the qualification of more candidates following a move by vetting body Constitutional Council to disqualify a number of prominent figures, including Vice President Es'haq Jahangiri.
- Iran presidential election 2021: Candidates announced, cleared to start campaigning Press TV 25 May 2021 -- Iran's Interior Ministry has released a final list of the candidates found qualified by the Constitutional Council to run for president in the June 18 election, officially clearing them to start campaigning.
- Extension of agreement with IAEA signifies Iran's goodwill: Rabiei IRNA 25 May 2021 -- Noting that Iran's extension of a three-month agreement with IAEA for another month was a sign of goodwill by the country, Government spokesman Ali Rabiei said that the only proper response to Iran's move is to accelerate the negotiations and immediately terminate the unilateral sanctions against Tehran.
- Five Military Troops, Two Militia Members Killed in Latest Clashes in Myanmar's Kayah State Radio Free Asia 25 May 2021 -- At least five military troops and two members of a local militia were killed during intense fighting in Myanmar's Kayah state on Tuesday that destroyed a government tank, left residents critically injured, and added to tens of thousands of people displaced by violence since the weekend.
- Myanmar's Students Stay Home Despite Junta Orders to Enroll Ahead of New School Year Radio Free Asia 25 May 2021 -- Myanmar's students are largely ignoring orders from the military junta to enroll for the new school year, with only about 10 percent signing up in some places and just a week remaining before classes begin, sources in Myanmar told RFA.
- HRW, NGOs Call on Thai Firm to Back Off on Myanmar Oil Deals Radio Free Asia 25 May 2021 -- Human Rights Watch on Tuesday joined a chorus of NGOs calling for Thailand's state-owned oil and gas firm to not expand business ties with Myanmar's junta while the Burmese military carries on with a bloody post-coup crackdown on protesters.
- Bangladesh Relying on World Community to Press Myanmar Junta on Rohingya Repatriation Radio Free Asia 25 May 2021 -- Bangladesh is counting on the international community to pressure Myanmar into repatriating more than 1 million Rohingya refugees, after the Burmese junta chief said that Naypyidaw does not recognize them as citizens, a senior lawmaker told BenarNews, an RFA-affiliated online news service, on Tuesday.
- Biden Administration Moves to Protect Myanmar Nationals Residing in US VOA 25 May 2021 -- Nearly four months after a coup in Myanmar triggered a prolonged period of violence and upheaval in the country, the Biden administration has designated Myanmar nationals for Temporary Protected Status (TPS), allowing many in the U.S. to be shielded from deportation and obtain work permits.
- Belarusian Court Sentences Opposition Politician, Pro-Democracy Activists RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- Belarusian opposition politician Paval Sevyarynets has been sentenced to seven years in prison by a regional court in the eastern city of Mahilyou on a criminal charge of "organizing mass unrest."
- More Airlines Halt Belarus Overflights Following Controversial Plane Diversion RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- More airlines have announced a suspension of their flights over Belarusian airspace after the country diverted a passenger plane to Minsk and arrested a dissident journalist.
- Airlines Shun Belarusian Airspace As Calls For Sanctions Over Plane Diversion Grow RFE/RL 25 May 2021 -- The global aviation industry has moved to isolate Belarus as the leader of the country's opposition called for the international community to act in concert to stop authoritarian leader Alyaksandr Lukashenka from acting with "impunity" following the diversion of a commercial airliner and arrest of an opposition journalist.
- Forced landing of Ryanair flight FR4978 in Minsk: UK statement UK FCDO 25 May 2021 -- Ambassador Neil Bush condemns the actions on 23 May by the Belarusian authorities, who arrested journalist Roman Protasevich having forced his flight to land in Minsk.
- Belarus: UN human rights office calls for 'immediate release' of Roman Protasevich UN News 25 May 2021 -- The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has strongly condemned the arbitrary detention of an opposition journalist in Belarus, calling it an "astonishing episode" that heralds a new phase in the campaign of repression against journalists and civil society there.
- UN Likens Belarus' Seizure of Journalist to Extraordinary Rendition VOA 25 May 2021 -- The Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights says the seizure by Belarus of a journalist traveling on a plane is tantamount to extraordinary rendition - a state-sponsored abduction.
- Belarus Opposition Leader Alleges Journalist from Diverted Plane Beaten in Detention VOA 25 May 2021 -- Belarus opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya said Tuesday it is clear that Raman Pratasevich, the journalist arrested Sunday after the passenger jet he was traveling on was diverted and forced to land in Minsk, has been beaten in detention.
- How Pakistan's Economy Is Failing Its People RFE/RL Gandhara 25 May 2021 -- In 2017, China poured billions of dollars into energy and infrastructure investments into Pakistan and the World Bank praised Islamabad for accelerating gross domestic product growth, which exceeded 5 percent that fiscal year -- the highest in nearly a decade.
- Joint Statement by the Secretary of State of the United States of America, the Foreign Secretary of the United Kingdom, and the Foreign Ministers of France, Germany, and Italy US Dept. of State 25 May 2021 -- The following statement was released by United States Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio, and UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab on Syria's presidential election.
- Syria Presidential Election on 26 May: Quint Statement UK FCDO 25 May 2021 -- Joint Statement by the Secretary of State of the United States of America, the Foreign Secretary of the United Kingdom and the Foreign Ministers of France, Germany, and Italy on the presidential election in Syria.
- Western Governments Denounce Syria's Elections VOA 25 May 2021 -- In a joint statement released a day ahead of Syria's national elections, some Western countries denounced the poll, which they said would be neither free nor fair.
- London and Brussels clash over Northern Ireland Protocol Press TV 25 May 2021 -- The UK and the European Union (EU) have once again clashed over the terms and conditions of the Northern Ireland Protocol as post-Brexit tensions show no sign of subsiding.
- Regional Envoys to Visit Mali After Military Detains Transition Leaders VOA 25 May 2021 -- A delegation from the regional bloc ECOWAS (Economic Community of West African States) is heading to Mali Tuesday, a day after the West African nation's military detained the president and prime minister.
- UK condemns the detention of Malian government figures: Minister Duddridge statement UK FCDO 25 May 2021 -- Statement by Sonia Farrey, UK Political Coordinator at the UN, at the Security Council open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict
- Promoting an inclusive and effective government to ensure political stability in Somalia UK FCDO 25 May 2021 -- Statement by Sonia Farrey, UK Political Coordinator at the UN, at the Security Council open debate on the protection of civilians in armed conflict
- Somali leaders walk 'back from the brink', resume talks on critical elections UN News 25 May 2021 -- A summit involving leaders of Somalia's political factions is underway in Mogadishu, a welcome relief after months of escalating tension, the senior UN official in the country told the Security Council on Tuesday, expressing hope that a consensus on electoral plans will be announced imminently.
- Africa essential for sustainable development, poverty reduction and peace UN News 25 May 2021 -- Africa's rich, diverse cultural and natural heritage, is important for sustainable development, poverty reduction, and "building and maintaining peace", the UN chief said on Tuesday, marking the international day celebrating the continent.
- Two Bank Executives Charged for Conspiring to Launder Hundreds of Millions of Dollars Through U.S. Financial System in Connection with Odebrecht Bribery and Fraud Scheme US Dept. of Justice 25 May 2021 -- An Austrian man was arrested today in the United Kingdom on criminal charges related to his alleged participation in a conspiracy to launder hundreds of millions of dollars through the U.S. financial system as part of a scheme to pay bribes around the world and defraud the Brazilian government.
- Sudan Sovereign Council Member Resigns, Accuses Military Leaders of Interference VOA 25 May 2021 -- A civilian member of Sudan's ruling Sovereign Council has resigned, citing interference from military officials in the transitional government.
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