Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)
September 2018 - United Kingdom Special Weapons News
- UK set for new Birmingham warship and will keep amphibious assault ships, Defence Secretary announces UK MOD 30 Sep 2018 -- Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has today made two major announcements for the future of British warships, as he named a new frigate HMS Birmingham and revealed he is protecting HMS Bulwark and HMS Albion.
- Defence Secretary Bolsters Support for Armed Forces UK MOD 30 Sep 2018 -- A series of new schemes and initiatives, designed to support serving personnel and their families throughout their military careers and beyond, has been announced by Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson today.
- UK to maintain military presence in Germany UK MOD 30 Sep 2018 -- The UK will continue to have a military presence in Germany beyond 2020, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has announced today
- UK Unveils Strategy to Defend Arctic in Light of Alleged Russian Threat Sputnik 30 Sep 2018 -- UK Defense Minister unveiled on Sunday the country's new Defense Arctic Strategy, citing increasing threats in the region and Russia's alleged attempts to militarize it.
- UK to Send Commandos to Norway to Curb Russian Activity in Arctic – Report Sputnik 30 Sep 2018 -- With the Russian-British relations going downhill after the Skripal poisoning, Gavin Williamson has revealed details of Britain's plan that he branded a "defence Arctic strategy," which could reportedly be the largest operation of its kind since the Cold War.
- More Expensive Than Expected: Brexit Costs UK £500Mln Per Week – Report Sputnik 30 Sep 2018 -- According to the Centre for European Reforms, Brexit is costing the public £500 million ($651 million), instead of the £350 million promised by the Leave campaign.
- Defence Secretary announces new Defence Arctic Strategy UK MOD 30 Sep 2018 -- Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has today announced a new Defence Arctic Strategy, acknowledging the increasing opportunities and threats the region presents.
- Third Russian Possibly Involved in Salisbury Poisoning VOA 28 Sep 2018 -- British investigators now say a third Russian military intelligence officer was involved in the poisoning in March this year of former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in the southern English cathedral town of Salisbury.
- Report: Third Alleged Russian Agent Involved In Skripal Mission Identified RFE/RL 28 Sep 2018 -- A third suspected Russian military intelligence officer who carried out a reconnaissance mission before the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter has been identified by British counterterrorism police and the security services, The Telegraph newspaper reported on September 27.
- Kremlin: No Information of Anyone Named Chepiga Ever Awarded by Putin Sputnik 28 Sep 2018 -- Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday that he had verified media reports about a state award handed out to Anatoly Chepiga – alleged by UK investigative bloggers from Bellingcat to be the real name of Ruslan Boshirov, a suspect in the Skripal poisoning case.
- UK-Based Bellingcat, The Insider to Issue 'Information About Petrov' - Reports Sputnik 28 Sep 2018 -- The UK-based investigative blogger group Bellingcat and The Insider Russia media outlet are going to issue information about the real identity of Alexander Petrov, who is suspected by London of being involved in the Salisbury incident, within 7-10 days, The Guardian newspaper reported on Friday.
- Multi-million-pound competition to destroy battlefield chemical weapons launched by UK and US UK MOD 27 Sep 2018 -- The UK has launched a two-million-pound competition alongside the US in a joint-mission to safely eliminate chemical and biological devices on the battlefield.
- Russia to look into new claims on UK poisoning suspects Press TV 27 Sep 2018 -- Russian authorities say they will investigate claims in the British media that one of the two men accused of a poisoning attack on a double spy in southern England in March was a Russian colonel.
- 'Complete Nonsense': How Russia Is Countering A New Report On The Salisbury Poisoning Suspect RFE/RL 27 Sep 2018 -- The Russian government and media are casting doubt on a new report claiming to reveal the true identity of a Russian man Britain accuses of the nerve-agent attack on former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in southern England.
- Russia Derides New Claims in Skripal Poisoning VOA 27 Sep 2018 -- Moscow has responded derisively to a report by a Britiain-based investigative group claiming one of the two men suspected of poisoning ex-spy Sergei Skripal is a highly decorated colonel in Russian military intelligence.
- Russian Officer Named in Britain Nerve Agent Poisoning VOA 26 Sep 2018 -- A group of British investigative journalists have identified a highly decorated member of the Russian military intelligence agency (GRU) as one of two men accused of trying to assassinate an ex-Russian spy and his daughter in Britain earlier this year.
- Salisbury Poisoning Suspect Named As Russian Colonel RFE/RL 26 Sep 2018 -- The real identity of one of the two Russians blamed by Britain for the Salisbury nerve-agent attack on former Russian spy Sergei Skripal is Anatoly Chepiga, the investigative website Bellingcat says, adding that he was a decorated Russian colonel.
- Beijing Slams UK for S China Sea 'Provocation', Urges London Not to 'Take Sides' Sputnik 25 Sep 2018 -- The Chinese government is keeping the pressure on Britain after a Royal Navy amphibious transport dock carrying landing craft and helicopters passed through the disputed Paracel Islands on its way to Vietnam earlier this month.
- China wants Britain's impartiality in South China Sea dispute Press TV 25 Sep 2018 -- China has called on the United Kingdom to live up to its promises to remain impartial in a dispute between Beijing and several other countries about the South China Sea region.
- UK Charity Asks Intel Agencies to Explain Reasons for Unlawful Spying on Staff Sputnik 25 Sep 2018 -- UK-based NGO Privacy International said Tuesday it had sent a letter to UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid asking him to instruct UK intelligence agencies to explain reasons for unlawful spying on the organization.
- UK Media Claims Royal Navy Didn't Send Subs to Hit Syria Due to Lack of Assets Sputnik 24 Sep 2018 -- In early September, a number of media outlets reported that the UK had dispatched a nuclear-powered submarine carrying cruise missiles capable of hitting ground targets, to the Mediterranean.
- Streets ahead: British AI eyes scan future frontline in multinational urban experiment UK MOD 24 Sep 2018 -- British autonomous technology able to scour urban environments for enemy advances has been tested alongside an arsenal of futuristic military technology by Canadian soldiers on the streets of Montreal.
- Defence Secretary announces extension of support to Ukraine's Armed Forces UK MOD 21 Sep 2018 -- Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has reaffirmed the United Kingdom's commitment to Ukraine in visit to Marinka and Kyiv
- UK, France dispatch jets to intercept Russian bombers over North Sea Press TV 21 Sep 2018 -- Britain and France have separately scrambled fighter jets to intercept two Russian long-range bombers that they said were approaching UK airspace over the North Sea.
- Britain to create massive cyber warfare unit with 2,000 personnel Press TV 21 Sep 2018 -- The British government is to massively expand its cyber warfare infrastructure with the creation of a 2,000-strong unit that could absorb some 250 million pounds of annual funding and even more.
- UK fighter jets intercept Russian bombers approaching UK airspace UK MOD 20 Sep 2018 -- Russian Blackjack bombers were not talking to air traffic control, making them a hazard to all other aviation
- United Kingdom - Phalanx Baseline 2 Radar Upgrade Kits DSCA 20 Sep 2018 -- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the United Kingdom of fifty (50) MK 15 Phalanx Close-in Weapon System (CIWS) Block IB Baseline 2 Upgrade Kits for an estimated cost of $75 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on September 19, 2018.
- United Kingdom - SEAL Delivery Vehicle (SDV) MK 11 Shallow Water Combat Submersibles (SWCS) DSCA 20 Sep 2018 -- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the United Kingdom of three (3) SEAL Delivery Vehicles (SDV) MK 11 Shallow Water Combat Submersibles (SWCS) for an estimated cost of $90 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on September 19, 2018.
- British companies get green light to press ahead with new Army vehicle plans, Defence Minister announces UK MOD 19 Sep 2018 -- A programme to supply the British Army with a new fleet of eight-wheeled armoured vehicles has taken a major step forward, Defence Minister Stuart Andrew has announced at one of the world's leading land
- Widow of Poisoned Spy: UK Has Upped Response to Would-Be Assassins VOA 19 Sep 2018 -- The widow of an ex-KGB agent who was poisoned by a radioactive isotope in 2006 says Britain's swift medical and diplomatic response to the recent nerve agent attack on former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter shows some improvement by British officials.
- Qatari jet export deal swings into action UK MOD 18 Sep 2018 -- Qatar's deal to buy 24 Typhoon jets and nine Hawks is now officially effective after BAE Systems received its first payment today.
- Lift-off: F-35 take-off technology site opens ahead of historic flight trials UK MOD 18 Sep 2018 -- A state-of-the-art new facility making unique vertical lift technology for fighter jets has been opened by Defence Minister Stuart Andrew in Bristol today.
- U.K. Judge Rules Spy Evidence On Dead Russian Businessman Should Stay Secret RFE/RL 18 Sep 2018 -- Material about possible links between British spy agencies and a Russian businessman who died in mysterious circumstances in Britain nearly six years ago will remain secret, a judge has ruled.
- UK, India Space Agencies Launch Twin Satellites Into Orbit, Collaborate Efforts Sputnik 17 Sep 2018 -- A joint venture between British, Australian, and Indian governments sent two state-of-the-art satellites into orbit on Sunday. Indian and British experts have hailed the project as the first of its kind and will help the British space industry achieve new ground on future programs.
- Skripal Poisoning 'Suspects' Have Nothing to Do With Putin - Kremlin Sputnik 16 Sep 2018 -- On September 13, RT released an interview with Petrov and Boshirov, in which they denied any involvement in the Skripal case. The men stressed that they have no connection to the Russian military intelligence service (GRU) and were simply visiting Salisbury as tourists.
- Swiss Confirm Russians Tried To Hack Lab Analyzing Skripal Samples RFE/RL 15 Sep 2018 -- The Swiss government has confirmed reports that Dutch authorities had arrested and expelled two suspected Russian spies earlier this year after the two allegedly tried to hack a Swiss laboratory that conducts chemical weapons tests.
- Bellingcat: Russian Documents Suggest Novichok Suspects Were Operatives RFE/RL 14 Sep 2018 -- The independent Bellingcat research organization says it has reviewed Russian documents, which indicate that the two men suspected in the poisoning of British spy Sergei Skripal have no records in the Russian resident database prior to 2009, a sign they may be working as operatives for the government.
- Novichok Suspects: Gay Or Not Gay? That Is Russian State Media's Question RFE/RL 14 Sep 2018 -- "Living together is merrier and easier, it's normal," explained Ruslan Boshirov as he appeared to defend himself against the suggestion that he and fellow Novichok-poisoning suspect Aleksandr Petrov had slept in the same bed during their March trip to England.
- Russia Ready For Serious Talks With London on Skripal Case - Lavrov Sputnik 14 Sep 2018 -- Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has announced that Moscow is prepared to conduct serious talks with London regarding the investigation of the alleged poisoning of Sergei Skripal.
- ITF Team Nears Historic Testing with HMS Queen Elizabeth NNS 13 Sep 2018 -- The F-35 Patuxent River Integrated Test Force (ITF) is nearing another milestone as they prepare to embark two F-35Bs on board the United Kingdom's newest aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth for First of Class Flight Trials (Fixed Wing), or FOCFT (FW), this fall.
- Russians Accused in UK Poisoning: 'Coincidence' They Were in Salisbury VOA 13 Sep 2018 -- Two Russian men accused by Britain of carrying out the March poisoning of a former Russian spy in Salisbury, England, said Thursday it was just an "incredible, fatal coincidence" they were in the city at the time of the attack.
- UK rejects poisoning suspects' claims, reiterates they were Russia agents Press TV 13 Sep 2018 -- Authorities in Britain have rejected claims by two Russians suspected of poisoning a double spy in March in the English town of Salisbury, repeating their previous statements that the pair were Moscow's agents and had carried out the attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter.
- Russian Novichok Suspects Claim They Visited Salisbury As Tourists RFE/RL 13 Sep 2018 -- Two men accused by London of poisoning former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter with a military-grade nerve agent have told Russia's state-funded RT television station they visited the British city of Salisbury in March as tourists.
- Skripal Poisoning "Suspects" Tell Sputnik, RT Editor-in-Chief They're Not Agents Sputnik 13 Sep 2018 -- The statement comes following an announcement from Sputnik and RT editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan that the "suspects" in the Skripal poisoning case had agreed to be interviewed by RT and Sputnik.
- UK mass spying regime violated human rights: European Court of Human Rights Press TV 13 Sep 2018 -- The UK government's mass surveillance program known as "Big Brother" violated human rights and had "no real safeguards," the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has said in a landmark ruling.
- Big Win: Britain's GCHQ Spygrid Violates Right to Privacy, ECHR Rules Sputnik 13 Sep 2018 -- A major court ruling on Thursday said that the UK had violated European law, serving as a victory to privacy advocates worldwide. The news comes days after five nations charged with global surveillance released a memo urging tech companies to use workarounds to internet encryption.
- UK Army Not Expected to Tackle Shortage of 8,200 Troops Before 2022 - Report Sputnik 12 Sep 2018 -- The UK Armed Forces suffer from the lack of skilled personnel in over 100 trades critical for the field, including in intelligence, and will manage to fill over 8,000 currently vacant posts in 2022 in the best case scenario, the Commons Public Accounts Committee said in its report released on Wednesday.
- UK slams Putin's account on suspected agents in poisoning case Press TV 12 Sep 2018 -- The British government has slammed Russia's most recent clarifications on a spy poisoning case that has caused bilateral relations to sink to historic lows, saying Moscow has responded with nothing but "lies" to requests for more investigation into the issue.
- Putin Says Russia Has Identified U.K.'s Novichok Suspects, Claims They Are Civilians RFE/RL 12 Sep 2018 -- President Vladimir Putin says Russia has identified the men Britain suspects of poisoning former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter with a military-grade nerve agent, contradicting U.K. authorities by claiming they are civilians.
- UK Abandons Plans to Fully Withdraw Troops From Germany by 2020 - Reports Sputnik 09 Sep 2018 -- UK State Secretary for Defense Gavin Williamson has ordered hundreds of the country's servicemen to remain on German territory despite earlier plans for a complete troop withdrawal, local media reported.
- UK Submarine Reportedly Enters Mediterranean Amid Expected Provocations in Syria Sputnik 09 Sep 2018 -- The deployment of the submarine was preceded by a build-up in US naval forces in the region, which took place amid warnings issued by the Russian Defense Ministry about planned provocations using chemical weapons in Syria. The last such provocation triggered joint airstrikes by the US, UK and France against Damascus.
- U.K. Will Nab Spy Poisoning Suspects If They Leave Russia, Home Secretary Says RFE/RL 09 Sep 2018 -- Britain will catch two men accused of using the Novichok nerve agent in the English town of Salisbury if they ever step out of Russia, Home Secretary Sajid Javid has said.
- Confusion Reigns Over Identities of Alleged Russian Hitmen VOA 08 Sep 2018 -- The two Russian hitmen who British authorities accuse of attempting to murder former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia made several European trips – including half-a-dozen to Geneva – in the months leading up to the Salisbury nerve agent attack.
- Beijing protests UK naval incursion People's Daily 07 Sep 2018 -- Beijing expressed strong dissatisfaction on Thursday after a naval vessel from the United Kingdom sailed into territorial waters off China's Xisha Islands, with China urging an immediate cessation of such provocative actions.
- British Warship Sails by South China Sea Islands VOA 06 Sep 2018 -- China accused Britain of "provocation" after a Royal Navy warship sailed near islands claimed by Beijing in the disputed South China Sea.
- Beijing Slams London After UK Warship Spotted in South China Sea - Reports Sputnik 06 Sep 2018 -- The Chinese government slammed "provocative actions" by the UK after the appearance of a British HMS Albion Warship off the Paracel Islands.
- UK warship sails near controversial Chinese islands, draws angry response Press TV 06 Sep 2018 -- A British Royal Navy warship has sailed close to Chinese-claimed islands in the South China Sea, in a move that Beijing has slammed as a "provocation."
- Russia denies involvement in Skripal poisoning, slams UK's 'unacceptable' claim Press TV 06 Sep 2018 -- The Russian government has categorically rejected the UK's "unacceptable" claim that Kremlin had been involved in a nerve agent attack in March on a former spy in Salisbury.
- UK minister heaps blame on Putin for Novichok attack Press TV 06 Sep 2018 -- Britain's security minister has directly blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin for a poisoning attack in March in the southern English city of Salisbury a day after London named two suspects for an incident that has caused relations between the two countries to sink to historic lows.
- Britain, Allies Urge Moscow To Accept 'Compelling Evidence' In Novichok Attack RFE/RL 06 Sep 2018 -- Britain, bolstered by strong backing from its allies, condemned Russia at the UN Security Council over the chemical attack on a former Russian spy and his daughter on British soil earlier this year, urging Moscow to accept the "compelling evidence in this crime."
- British Security Minister Says Putin 'Ultimately Responsible' For Skripal Poisoning RFE/RL 06 Sep 2018 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin bears ultimate responsibility for the nerve-agent poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter in England in March, Britain's security minister says.
- Kremlin Regrets London's Noncooperation With Russia on Skripal Case Sputnik 06 Sep 2018 -- Moscow has once again rejected London's newest claims over the Skripal case. On September 5, the UK police press service revealed photos of alleged suspects in the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter. The two men were said to be Russian nationals.
- Putin Bears 'Strong Responsibility' for Skripal Attack - UK Security Minister Sputnik 06 Sep 2018 -- UK Minister of State for Security Ben Wallace said on Thursday that Russian President Vladimir Putin 'bears very strong responsibility' for the poisoning of Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in the city of Salisbury.
- Russian operatives carried out Salisbury chemical attack alleges UK; accusations part of 'post-truth world' asserts Moscow UN News 06 Sep 2018 -- The United Kingdom and Russia traded a volley of words at the United Nations Security Council on Thursday, with the former laying out information which, it alleges, clearly places two Russian military intelligence operatives behind the deadly nerve-agent attack in the English city of Salisbury on 4 March.
- Kremlin: UK Accusing Russia in Ex-Spy's Poisoning 'Unacceptable' VOA 06 Sep 2018 -- Russia has again denied involvement in the poisoning of a former Russian spy and his daughter, and said Britain's accusation that Moscow played a role was unacceptable.
- Warnings of Disruption as Britain Prepares for Possible 'No-Deal Brexit' VOA 05 Sep 2018 -- Britain risks considerable disruption to many aspects of its economy and society, including trade, transport, health care and citizens' rights, if it crashes out of the European Union next March without a deal, according to a report into the risks of a so-called "no-deal Brexit."
- Moscow accuses London of 'manipulating information' in nerve agent case Press TV 05 Sep 2018 -- Russia has accused the United Kingdom of "manipulating information" concerning a nerve agent attack in March on a former spy in the city of Salisbury after the British authorities charged two Russians.
- U.K. Charges Russians In Novichok Case, May Says 'Not a Rogue Operation' RFE/RL 05 Sep 2018 -- Britain has announced charges against two Russian men they believe poisoned former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia with a deadly nerve agent, alleging they were military intelligence officers acting with approval from "a senior level of the Russian state."
- May's Statement on Skripal Case Unacceptable - Russian Foreign Ministry Sputnik 05 Sep 2018 -- The Russian Foreign Ministry has issued a statement, commenting on UK Prime Minister Theresa May's speech concerning new data on the Skripal case that she delivered to Parliament earlier in the day.
- May Claims 2 Suspects in Skripal Poisoning Are Officers of Russian Intelligence Sputnik 05 Sep 2018 -- "We were right to say in March the Russian state was responsible," said the UK Prime Minister Theresa May, addressing the Parliament on Wednesday with an update on the Salisbury incident.
- British PM: Skripals' Attackers Were Russian Military Agents VOA 05 Sep 2018 -- Two active members of Russian military intelligence were sent to Britain in March to poison a former spy, Britain's prime minister told Parliament on Wednesday after prosecutors charged two Russian nationals with conspiracy and attempted murder.
- Ex-British colony challenges UK claim to islands at ICJ Press TV 04 Sep 2018 -- Former British colony Mauritius has challenged at the World Court the legality of the United Kingdom's claim to its Chagos Islands, which now host the key US military base of Diego Garcia.
- UK's Warplane Deal With Qatar May Cost 'Billions' of Taxpayers' Money – Report Sputnik 04 Sep 2018 -- In December 2017, the UK defense giant BAE Systems clinched a deal with Qatar to sell the Gulf nation 24 Typhoon fighter jets as well as a package comprising weapons, pilot training and maintenance.
- UK may lose billions of taxpayer money over Qatar military deal: Report Press TV 04 Sep 2018 -- The UK government could end up losing billions of its taxpayer money because it has underwritten a major military deal to sell Typhoon fighter jets to Qatar.
- UK bolsters support to NATO mission in Afghanistan UK MOD 04 Sep 2018 -- 100 troops arrive in Kabul alongside Defence Secretary
- Chemical Weapons Watchdog Confirms Novichok Killed British Woman RFE/RL 04 Sep 2018 -- The substance that killed a woman in England in June was the same Novichok nerve agent that poisoned a former Russian agent and his daughter in May, the world's chemical weapons watchdog has confirmed.
- OPCW Probe Confirms Amesbury Victims Poisoned by Same Substance as Skripals Sputnik 04 Sep 2018 -- The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which had been conducting an independent investigation into two poisoning cases, which took place in the United Kingdom, has released a report on what it called "toxic chemical incidents" in Amesbury.
- UK Army's Armored Vehicles in Afghanistan Break Down Over Heat - Reports Sputnik 03 Sep 2018 -- The UK army's Foxhound armored vehicles in Afghanistan give out roughly once a week because of overheating, the UK Times newspaper reported.
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