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14 août 2014 4 14 /08 /août /2014 11:35
Coopération militaire franco-fidjienne : changement d’attaché de défense

Passage de témoin : Encadrant l’ambassadeur de France à Fidji et à Tonga, Gilles Montagnier, le Colonel Arnaud Bouyssou cède la place au Capitaine de frégate Hubert Jannot en tant qu‘attaché de défense pour les îles Fidji et Tonga.


13.08.2014 tahiti-infos.com (Flash d’Océanie)


SUVA – La coopération militaire franco-fidjienne a changé d’attaché de défense, un poste défini sur une bases non-résidente depuis Nouméa (Nouvelle-Calédonie).

Le titulaire de ce poste d’attaché de défense non résident est désormais le Capitaine de frégate Hubert Jannot qui, toujours, depuis Nouméa, a aussi en charge la coopération militaire avec le royaume de Tonga, a annoncé en fin de semaine dernière l’ambassade de France à Suva.

Il succède ainsi au Colonel Arnaud Bouyssou, qui a notamment supervisé plusieurs opérations à caractère humanitaire post-catastrophes à Fidji et à Tonga.

Les forces françaises, y compris celles basées en Nouvelle-Calédonie et en Polynésie française, ont apporté un important soutien logistique à des opérations humanitaires au bénéfices des populations de Fidji et de Tonga, notamment après le passage des cyclones Evan (Fidji, décembre 2012) et Ian (Tonga, début 2014).

L’armée française, dans le cadre de ces opérations, est signataires, aux côtés de l’Australie et la Nouvelle-Zélande, de l’accord dit « FRANZ ».

Cet accord, depuis fin 1992, vise à coordonner et harmoniser les moyens des forces de ces trois pays pour venir au secours des populations insulaires de la région touchées par ce genre de catastrophes naturelles.


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14 août 2014 4 14 /08 /août /2014 11:35
100 Year Commemoration of the Departure of the Australian Expeditionary Force for German New Guinea


12 August 2014 .defence.gov.au


100 Year Commemoration of the Departure of the Australian Naval and Military Expeditionary Force from Sydney, Australia for German New Guinea


To commemorate this historic event, the New South Wales Government is holding a service on Sunday 17 August 2014, commencing at 12.25pm at Government House. The event will commence at Government House with an address to the cadets by Rear Admiral Raydon Gates and re-enactment of the march from Government House down Macquarie Street. Members of the public are welcome to watch the cadets march down Macquarie St. For further information please visit the Centenary of ANZAC website.

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14 août 2014 4 14 /08 /août /2014 07:35
US Reassures China as 2,500 Marines Head to Australia


Aug. 12, 2014 – Defense News (AFP)


SYDNEY — The United States stressed Tuesday it welcomes the rise of China and wants to work constructively with Beijing as it signed a deal to deploy 2,500 Marines to Australia as part of its “rebalance” to Asia.


China bristled when the agreement to deploy Marines to the northern city of Darwin was first announced by President Barack Obama in 2011.


But after signing the deal at the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) in Sydney, US Secretary of State John Kerry said Washington was not interested in conflict with the Asian powerhouse.


“We welcome the rise of China as a global partner, hopefully as a powerful economy, as a full participating constructive member of the international community,” he said.


“We are not seeking conflict and confrontation. And our hope is that China will likewise take advantage of the opportunities that are in front of it and be that cooperative partner.”


Australia’s Foreign Minister Julie Bishop earlier defended the deal to bring US Marines and Air Force personnel to the Northern Territory, denying it was aimed at China which is embroiled in maritime disputes with neighbors.


“That’s not what it is directed to do at all. It’s about working closely with the United States to ensure that we can work on regional peace and security,” she told a radio program.


“The United States is rebalancing to the Asia-Pacific so it’s ways we can work together to support economic development as well as security and peace.”


After the talks Bishop, who also hosted US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, said the discussions were broad — ranging from tensions on the Korean peninsula to the crisis in Ukraine and to conflicts in Syria, Iraq, Gaza and Afghanistan.


Threat of Foreign Jihadists


The threat of foreign jihadist militants fighting in these conflicts and then returning home radicalized was also explored. The US and Australia agreed to raise the issue at the United Nations.


Kerry said this problem, highlighted by images in local media of the seven-year-old son of an Australian jihadist in Syria holding a severed head, underscored the degree to which Islamic State fighters were “so far beyond the pale.”


“This image, perhaps even an iconic photograph, is really one of the most disturbing, stomach-turning, grotesque photos ever displayed,” Kerry said.


“It’s no accident that every country in the region is opposed to ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant).”


Bishop made no comment about the prospect of an increased US military presence beyond the Marines, some 1,200 of whom are already in the country.


But a communique issued after the talks said that enhanced aircraft and naval cooperation was discussed, while the allies would also examine options for Australia’s contributions to ballistic missile defense in the region.


Bishop said there existed between Australia and the United States “a clear instinct for collaboration across a wide area of endeavor.”


“There is a desire to share the burden of implementing regional and global peace and prosperity, security and stability,” she said.


Bishop added that there was no more important security partner for Australia than the US and their longstanding alliance “had never been stronger.”


But she said Canberra did not envisage Australian troops would return to Iraq, where the US is carrying out air strikes and humanitarian airdrops to try to combat jihadist fighters.


However, Australia has offered support for humanitarian relief.


Kerry also ruled out sending troops to Iraq.


Speaking at the start of the talks at Sydney’s harborside Admiralty House, he said the Australia-US relationship was “essential to the stability of the Asia-Pacific region.”


“We do face new challenges,” he said, citing North Korea and maritime disputes in the South China Sea.

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14 août 2014 4 14 /08 /août /2014 07:35
THOMAS signs contract to assist with upgrade for Australian submarine control system
13.08.2014 Pacific Sentinel
Sydney, Australia – Thomas Global Systems announced that it has signed a contract with Saab Australia Pty Ltd to provide technical support and electronic manufacturing of key components for the Integrated Ship Control Management and Monitoring System (ISCMMS) upgrade on the Royal Australian Navy’s Collins Class submarines.
Saab was awarded the ISCMMS project by ASC Pty Ltd (formerly Australian Submarine Corporation) in November 2013 and the project will last until 2016 as the Collins fleet is upgraded to more advanced capabilities.
Thomas is providing the remote steering console components and other critical electronic control modules for two of the fleets six submarines, from June 2014 until early 2015.
Thomas CEO, Angus Hutchinson, said - “We are pleased to again be partnering with Saab, this time on the important Collins ISCMMS upgrade program.  This is a great example of Australian industry working together to provide world-class support for our critical defence assets.  Thomas Global Systems is honoured to continue its support of the Royal Australian Navy’s Collins fleet.”
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14 août 2014 4 14 /08 /août /2014 07:30
Humanitarian Assistance to Iraq

Royal Australian Air Force aircrew arrive at their C-130J Hercules transport aircraft as airdrop bundles of humanitarian aid are loaded into the aircraft for delivery to isolated Iraqi civilians on Mount Sinjar in northern Iraq - photo Australian DoD


14 August 2014 Australian DoD


The Australian Defence Force (ADF) has completed its first humanitarian drop to Iraq, delivering nine tonnes of badly needed supplies to Yezidi civilians, trapped on Mount Sinjar in the country’s north.


The RAAF C-130J Hercules delivered 10 large bundles of Australian humanitarian supplies.


The cargo included 150 boxes of high energy biscuits and 340 boxes of bottled water – enough to feed and hydrate 3700 people for 24 hours.


The ADF’s contribution in Iraq is part of a coordinated international humanitarian response.

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13 août 2014 3 13 /08 /août /2014 20:35
AUS: Conclusion of the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations
Left to Right - Aus Minister for Defence: David Johnston, US Secretary of State: John Kerry, Aus Minister for Foreign Affairs: Julie Bishop, and US Secretary of Defense: Chuck Hagel
13.08.2014 Pacific Sentinel
I (David Johnston: Minister for Defence) hosted my US counterpart, Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel, in Sydney for the 29th Australia-US Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) and bilateral discussions.
This was the second AUSMIN that Secretary Hagel and I have participated in together and the first time I have hosted Secretary Hagel in Australia.
Australia is committed to our Alliance relationship with the US, which remains the cornerstone of Australia’s strategic and security architecture. After more than 60 years, our Alliance remains as strong and relevant as ever.
During AUSMIN talks on Monday and Tuesday with the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, and the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, we discussed the strength of the Australia-US Alliance relationship and noted the significant progress made since last year’s meeting.
We signed a legally-binding agreement to facilitate the full implementation of the US force posture initiatives in northern Australia.
The Force Posture Agreement will provide a robust policy, legal and financial framework for the force posture initiatives. This important new agreement will facilitate the full implementation of the US Marine Corps and US Air Force initiatives in northern Australia that were agreed between our two countries in 2011.
The force posture initiatives are an expression of Australia’s support for a strong US presence in the region and their implementation was a central topic of discussions at AUSMIN.
During AUSMIN we also agreed to several new initiatives that will strengthen and enhance our security and defence cooperation.
We welcomed Japan’s efforts to make a greater contribution to international peace and stability. We agreed to enhance trilateral security and defence cooperation with Japan, including through the Trilateral Strategic Dialogue and further developing existing trilateral exercises.
In recognition of the growing threat posed by ballistic missile proliferation, we examined options for potential Australian contributions to regional Ballistic Missile Defence. I also accepted Secretary Hagel’s offer to send a team of experts to Australia to assess potential Australian contributions to the regional Ballistic Missile Defence capability.
In addition, we discussed our shared commitment to fostering global security and stability. We reaffirmed our commitment to completing a full international investigation into the origins of the attack against Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 in the Ukraine.
We also acknowledged the important contributions our defence personnel have made together to global security, including in Afghanistan. We agreed on the importance of maintaining the hard-won interoperability gains from over a decade of operations, particularly for our Special Forces.
We also discussed naval cooperation and asked our respective officials to develop practical options to enhance training and exercising in Australia and the region.
On Monday, Secretary Hagel and I conducted a bilateral meeting and participated in a roundtable event with leading Australian strategic commentators.
We also conducted a wreath laying in Hyde Park, in recognition of our shared sacrifices in every major war since World War I.
The wreath laying was attended by the Secretary of the Department of Defence, Mr Dennis Richardson, the Vice Chief of Defence Force, Vice Admiral Griggs, and Commander of US Pacific Command, Admiral Locklear.
Today I am travelling to Darwin to meet with Australian soldiers and members of the US Marine Corps rotational force at Robertson Barracks.
Robertson Barracks is home to the US Marine Corps rotational presence in northern Australia.
This year’s Marine rotation involves around 1150 US Marines, up from 250 Marines in 2013. The rotation also includes four helicopters and a range of vehicles and equipment. Larger rotations better position both nations to work with regional partners on common contingencies such as humanitarian assistance and disaster relief.
I thank Secretary Hagel for his visit to Australia, and for our robust and productive conversations during his time here.
A copy of the Final AUSMIN 2014 Communiqué (PDF) is available.
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13 août 2014 3 13 /08 /août /2014 18:35
Accord de défense entre les USA et l'Australie


12/08/2014 Par Lefigaro.fr avec AFP


Les Etats-Unis ont signé aujourd'hui avec l'Australie un accord pour déployer 2.500 Marines dans le pays dans le cadre de la stratégie de défense américaine en Asie, mais les deux alliés se sont voulus apaisants avec la Chine qui craint un endiguement de son influence. Le secrétaire d'Etat américain John Kerry participait à Sydney, au côté de son collègue du Pentagone Chuck Hagel, à la réunion annuelle de politique étrangère et de défense AusMin entre les Etats-Unis et l'Australie.  Selon l'accord signé par les deux gouvernements, le contingent de Marines déployés actuellement près de Darwin, la capitale du Territoire du Nord en Australie, devrait passer d'environ 1.200 à 2.500 soldats d'ici 2017.


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12 août 2014 2 12 /08 /août /2014 11:35
photo foreignminister.gov.au

photo foreignminister.gov.au

Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop, United States Secretary of State, John Kerry, Governor General of Australia, Sir Peter Cosgrove, United States Secretary of Defense, Chuck Hagel and Minister for Defence, David Johnston ahead of the signing of the Force Posture Agreement during the Australia-United States Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN) 2014 at Admiralty House in Sydney. 12 August 2014.


Sydney, 11 août (Xinhua)


La ministre australienne des Affaires étrangères Julie Bishop et le ministre de la Défense David Johnston ont tenu lundi une conférence avec leurs homologues américains, le secrétaire d'Etat John Kerry et le secrétaire à la Défense Chuck Hagel avant les consultations ministérielles annuelles entre l'Australie et les Etats-Unis (AUSMIN) prévues mardi.


L'événement AUSMIN à Sydney comprendra la signature de l'Accord de la Posture militaire, qui établit le cadre légal de la présence de la marine américaine basée à Darwin, et qui permet le développement de l'armée américaine en Australie au cours des 25 prochaines années.


"AUSMIN est le forum principal de promotion de la coopération bilatérale sur les politiques étrangères, de défense et de politique stratégique entre l'Australie et les Etats-Unis. C'est l'occasion de réaffirmer notre alliance ainsi que la profondeur et l'ampleur de notre relation", a indiqué Mme Bishop dans un communiqué.


Mme Bishop a indiqué que les dirigeants discuteront des façons d'améliorer leur travail ensemble, particulièrement en faveur de la stabilité et de la sécurité régionales, et continueront à promouvoir la mise en application des initiatives de posture de l'armée américaine.


"Nos discussions exploreront des opportunités d'approfondissement de la coopération en matière de défense et d'interopérabilité entre nos deux armées", a indiqué Mne Bishop.


Il s'agit des deuxièmes AUSMIN impliquant MM. Kerry et Hagel, les premières ayant été tenues l'année dernière à Washington, aux Etats-Unis.

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12 août 2014 2 12 /08 /août /2014 07:35
MRF-D Marines beat the heat at KFTA - photo USMC

MRF-D Marines beat the heat at KFTA - photo USMC


Aug. 11, 2014 – Defense News


SYDNEY — Australia and the United States will sign a 25-year deal allowing 2,500 US Marines and air force personnel to train Down Under, Defence Minister David Johnston said Monday, describing it as a “win-win situation.”


The agreement will be inked Tuesday when US Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel meet with their Australian counterparts Julie Bishop and Johnston in Sydney.


Trouble spots abroad including Iraq and Ukraine will also be on the agenda for the Australia-US Ministerial Consultations (AUSMIN), which focus on regional security and military cooperation.


But the centerpiece will be the agreement allowing the Marine rotational deployment in the northern city of Darwin, which was first announced by US President Barack Obama in 2011 as part of his “pivot” towards Asia.


“Approximately 2,500 US defense force personnel will come to primarily the Northern Territory to exercise on the vast, open Commonwealth (government) military exercise grounds that we have,” Johnston told a joint press conference with Hagel.


“They will interoperate with Australia. They will do things that they want to, exercise activities that are important to them. We’ll assist them.”


Johnston said as many as 1,200 US Marines and air force personnel were already rotating into Darwin during the current dry season in Australia’s tropical north.


“These are the things that are benefiting Australia and the flipside of that coin is that we have just a lot of space that’s open for practice, exercises ... so it’s a win-win situation for both of us,” he said.


Hagel said the deal emphasized Washington’s “rebalance” towards the Asia-Pacific, saying the United States was a Pacific power holding about 200 ships and more than 360,000 personnel in the region.


“We are not going anywhere,” Hagel said. “Our partnerships are here, our treaty obligations are here and are important to us.


“It’s pretty clear that the US is committed to this part of the world but also this does not mean a retreat from any other part of the world. We have interests all over the world,” he added.


More Ways to Cooperate


Hagel said the talks on Tuesday, which analysts had said would likely pave the way for enhanced military cooperation between the allies, would give officials an opportunity to explore “better ways we can cooperate.”


“We will address a number of issues tomorrow. They will focus on maritime security, special forces, missile defense and Afghanistan,” he said.


He said the situation in Ukraine would also be on the agenda, as well as the threat from jihadist fighters of the Islamic State in Iraq, where Australia has offered to assist the US in humanitarian airdrops to those trapped by the violence.


Bates Gill, chief executive of the US Studies Center at the University of Sydney, said the talks would be an important next step in what appeared to be “a growing degree of access and presence for American assets both human and materiel on Australian territory”.


Gill said progress had been slow but careful since the announcement that Marines would rotate through Darwin, an agreement which rankled China.


It also caused concern for some Asian neighbors who saw it as a statement by Washington that it intends to stand up for its interests in the region amid concern about Beijing’s growing assertiveness.


The United States currently has only a limited deployment in longstanding ally Australia, including the Pine Gap Joint Defence Facility spy station near Alice Springs.


Regional security issues in Southeast Asia and the Pacific will be discussed in the AUSMIN talks, along with Myanmar, where Kerry and Bishop have just attended the Association of Southeast Asian Nations forum.


The ministers will also talk about Northeast Asia, comparing notes about their respective relations with China, and the challenges posed by North Korea.

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11 août 2014 1 11 /08 /août /2014 16:35
Hobart-class air warfare destroyers - Photo ASC

Hobart-class air warfare destroyers - Photo ASC


11 August 2014 Grant Turnbull - naval-technology.com


Australia’s troubled shipbuilding industry could be overhauled under radical proposals by the Canberra government, local media reports have indicated. Speculation is rife that British defence giant BAE Systems will be brought in to rescue the Navy’s long-delayed and over-budget Hobart-class air warfare destroyer (AWD) project.


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11 août 2014 1 11 /08 /août /2014 16:35
Australia To Renew Ground-based Air Defense Capability

Saab sees its upgraded RBS-70NG missile system as part of a possible solution to the Australian requirement. (Saab)


Jul. 27, 2014 - By NIGEL PITTAWAY – Defense News


MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA — Australia plans to include a replacement for its Saab RBS-70 very-short-range air defense missile system in its next Defence Capability Plan.


The Australian Army uses the RBS-70 system, along with the Lockheed Martin PSTAR-ER radar, to fulfill its ground-based air defense (GBAD) requirements, but an Australian Defence Force (ADF) spokesperson confirmed the combination was not considered adequate to defeat future threats.


“It is a dated, line-of-sight system missile that provides very-short-range GBAD and lacks the sensors, range and performance to protect against the likely threats of today’s helicopters, UAVs, stand-off aerial weapons, cruise missiles and rockets, artillery, mortars,” the spokesperson said.


The ADF is developing future ground-based air and missile defense requirements and examining options in the marketplace.


The new system will be acquired under the ongoing Project Land 17 Phase 7B, but has yet to gain much traction.


“The system is planned to provide the Joint Force with persistent defense against advanced threats including aircraft, helicopters,” the spokesperson said. “Land 19 Phase 7B is planned to have wide utility across many types of defense operations, not just application in conventional warlike operations.”


The Australian government will give first pass approval in fiscal 2016-2017, which the ADF says will allow time to initiate formal market solicitation. Acquisition is estimated to be between AUS $500 million (US $469 million) and AUS $1 billion.


Government approval for acquisition would be sought in fiscal 2017-2018.


Army initial operational capability is planned for fiscal 2020 to 2021.


“Land 19 Phase 7B will enhance or replace the existing GBAD system to allow it to function as a complete ground-based force protection system,” the ADF spokesperson said. “In a traditional combat setting it is planned to perform its core functions of airspace surveillance and identification, target tracking, target interception and destruction to provide an enhanced level of protection against current and emerging threats.”


The spokesperson said the project is modeled after the National Advanced surface-to-air missile system used by a number of European nations, and also by the US National Guard in defense of Washington.


“The US chose a ground-based system as the other options of continuous air combat patrols or permanently stationed air-warfare ships were more expensive, manpower-intensive and less persistent,” a spokesman for the project office said. “It was due to this system maturity and broad user group that it was selected as an exemplar to allow the early development work to progress.”


In 2012, the Australian Army took delivery of three Saab Giraffe agile multibeam (GAMB) radar systems under an urgent acquisition process to provide its base at Tarin Kot in Afghanistan with a counter-rocket, artillery and mortar capability.


Since the Australian withdrawal of most of its forces from Afghanistan, the two operational GAMB radars have been returned to Australia (the third had been retained locally for training) but do not have a clear role in domestic operations.


Saab Australia sees the Giraffe AMB, together with its upgraded RBS-70NG missile system, as a possible solution to the Australian requirement.


The missiles used by the RBS-70NG are identical to those in the earlier system already in use with the Army and comprise the third-generation Mk.2, with an effective range of 7 kilometers at heights up to 4,000 meters; and the fourth-generation Bolide round, capable of knocking down targets at distances up to 8 kilometers and altitudes up to 5,000 meters.


The company says the major change is to the sight, which has an integrated thermal imager, an auto-tracking system to improve aiming and guidance, automatic after-action video capability, and 3D visual cueing. This feature receives data from the surveillance radar, allowing the operator to find the target without actually seeing it first.


Saab officials claim that during recent comparative trials in India, RBS-70NG operators were getting their shot away before their competitors systems had even acquired the target.


The RBS-70NG also incorporates an identify friend or foe interrogator system as standard equipment while Saab works to integrate it with land vehicles, delivering a tactical, mobile GBAD system.


The company is proposing to upgrade Australia’s GAMB radars, including provision of a Link 16 datalink, and swap out the RBS-70 launchers for the upgraded equipment at what it claims is a modest cost.


The company has also integrated other missile systems with GAMB, including Raytheon’s I-Hawk and Diehl’s IRIS-T.


“We think it will be attractive to the ADF because Australia is already an RBS-70 user,” explained Jessica Rylander, an engineer with Saab’s Dynamics branch. “And the difference from an operator’s perspective is the increased” kill probability, she said.


The RBS-70NG sight enhances the capability of the Bolide missile by reducing tracking noise, increasing maneuverability and improving performance against small targets at maximum range, according to Saab.


“The RBS-70NG and Giraffe AMB solution is designed to address targets such as small UAVs, cruise missiles and helicopters in the 2025 space,” added Mat Jones, Saab Asia-Pacific business development manager.


“We are investing a lot of time, effort and money into GBAD, to ensure the architecture is future-proofed. The RBS-70NG/GAMB combination could provide a step change in capability, within the existing budget,” said Jones.


But much will depend on the final specifications mandated by Land 19/7B when the Defence Capability Plan is made public next year.

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9 août 2014 6 09 /08 /août /2014 18:35
Australia’s Controversial New Counterterror Measures


August 08, 2014 By Jarni Blakkarly - thediplomat.com


Concerns are expressed at the expanded authority, especially the mandatory collection of telecom metadata.


The Australian government has announced new counterterrorism measures that will make it easier to detain suspects without a warrant for extended periods and includes mandatory telecommunications metadata collection.

The widespread changes announced earlier this week have raised concerns for human rights, as well as the fears from the Muslim community who feel they are being directly targeted.

Among the changes is a broadening of the definition of a “terrorist organization” to include organizations that promote or encourage terrorism, extended questioning and detention powers without a warrant, and a A$630 million ($585 million) increase in funding for national security agencies over the next four years.

On Thursday, the Lebanese Muslim Association said the new powers seemed to “target the Muslim community” and “give authorities unprecedented and intrusive powers.”

“I urge the government to abandon these divisive measures and restore public confidence in our ostensible rights as citizens in a democratic nation,” the association’s President Samier Dandan said.

While acknowledging the need for safety and security, he added, “Divisive rhetoric and fear-mongering often used by political representatives and the media is only feeding the frenzy of an us-versus-them mentality.”

The Australian National Imams Council have said that “the proposed changes to the anti-terrorism laws will severely impinge on the rights and freedoms of all Australians and especially those of Muslim faith.”

The new counterterrorism measures have come in the context of growing government and public concern about Australians returning from fighting in Iraq and Syria to carry out terrorist attacks in Australia. It is believed around 150 Australians are involved in the fighting in the region.

The new changes also include greater intelligence sharing internationally and increased power to cancel passports of Australian nationals.

However, it is the mandatory collection of the meta-data of all citizens that has raised concerns outside of the Muslim community. Under the changes telecommunications companies would be required to store the data, which the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) would be able to access.

Data on users accessing “suspicious” websites could be accessed by ASIO without a warrant, whereas other access to the data would require a “generic warrant.”

After some confusion about what data would be collected, including a bumbling interview with the Attorney General who failed to explain what constituted “meta-data,” the government has clarified that only the IP addresses of users would be kept. Specific activity on websites such as Facebook will not be collected, although ASIO declined to say if conversations from sites such as WhatsApp and Skype could be accessed.

ASIO have sought to play down the intrusive level of the data storage, however many remain skeptical of meta-data intelligence gathering in the wake of the Edward Snowden revelations last year.

The government has said that the widespread nature of potential home-grown terrorist threats justifies the new data collection. However, last month The Saturday Paper reported that members of a parliamentary committee on intelligence and security said that the new ASIO powers were requested almost a year ago and that the current threat of fighters returning from abroad was being used as excuse.

When announcing the measures Prime Minister Tony Abbott said that the threat hadn’t increased but that it was “as high as it has ever been.” He added that while Australia’s terrorism alert level has remained on “medium” since September 11, there was now “heightened concern.”

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9 août 2014 6 09 /08 /août /2014 07:35
Exercise Hamel: Kiwis in the Outback

7 août 2014 NZDefenceForce


More than 200 New Zealand troops participated in a large scale army exercise in Townsville, northern Queensland, Australia. They trained beside over 4000 Australian and American soldiers to test their collective warfighting skills in a coalition environment. 1 Brigade's infantry, artillery, signals and logisticians were integrated into the wider exercise that lasted over a month.

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6 août 2014 3 06 /08 /août /2014 07:40
Les recherches s'intensifient sur le crash du MH17... entre les combats


03/08/2014 latribune.fr


70 spécialistes des polices néerlandaise et australienne sont à l'oeuvre depuis vendredi. Ils ont pu retrouver des restes des victimes. Ils doivent être rejoints dans les jours qui viennent par leurs collègues malaisiens et intensifier leurs recherches.


Les experts internationaux doivent reprendre ce dimanche leurs recherches concernant les restes des victimes du crash du vol MH17. Environ 70 spécialistes des polices néerlandaise et australienne, dont la mission a été reprise puis repoussé à de nombreuses reprises, sont à l'oeuvre depuis vendredi en zone rebelle. Vendredi et samedi, ils ont pu retrouver des restes humains des victimes et des effets leur appartenant. Ceux-ci doivent être rapportés ensuite à Kharkiv, en territoire contrôlé par Kiev plus au nord, avant d'être rapatriés aux Pays-Bas en vue d'être identifiés. Plus de 200 cercueils ont déjà été rapatriés dans les jours suivant la catastrophe, comme les boîtes noires.

Le travail minutieux, entrepris avec l'aide de chiens renifleurs dans la campagne ukrainienne sous la surveillance d'insurgés armés, s'annonce complexe, plus de deux semaines après la catastrophe du 17 juillet qui a conduit à une flambée des tensions internationales. Kiev accuse les insurgés pro-russes d'avoir abattu le Boeing de la Malaysia Airlines, qui transportait 298 passagers dont 193 Néerlandais, avec un missile fourni par Moscou.


Tirs à proximité de la zone

L'état-major ukrainien a indiqué que ses positions avaient subi plusieurs attaques dans la nuit de samedi à dimanche aux lance-roquettes Grad, une arme imprécise qui frappe de vastes zones. Elles ont aussi été visées, selon la même source, par de nouveaux tirs d'artillerie tirés depuis le territoire de la Russie.

A Lougansk, trois civils sont morts dans les combats en vingt-quatre heures, affirme ce dimanche la mairie, qui avait la veille averti d'une situation "au bord d'une catastrophe humanitaire". Dans cette ville de 500.000 habitants avant les hostilités, l'eau et l'électricité sont coupées, les communications sont très perturbées et les approvisionnements extérieurs en nourriture et carburants quasi-impossibles.

L'Organisation pour la Sécurité et la Coopération en Europe (OSCE) a fait état samedi soir, sur la foi de témoignages de réfugiés ayant quitté la ville, "de bombardements à l'artillerie lourde". "La plupart des magasins sont fermés et les gens commencent à manquer de nourriture", a-t-elle rapporté. Selon l'organisation, les bombardements s'intensifient en outre aux abords de Donetsk, la plus grande ville de cette région industrielle et principal fief des rebelles qui y ont proclamé une "République populaire".

Autour du site du crash, forces ukrainiennes et rebelles se sont engagées à un cessez-le-feu. Mais on entend régulièrement des explosions. Si les principales recherches engagées par les experts ont pu se poursuivre samedi, une petite équipe, qui s'était rendue dans une autre partie du site à la recherche d'une partie du fuselage du Boeing, a préféré rebrousser chemin, les tirs à l'arme lourde semblant se rapprocher. Les enquêteurs néerlandais et australiens doivent être rejoints dans les jours qui viennent par leurs collègues malaisiens afin d'intensifier les recherches, qui prendront plusieurs semaines.


Les Occidentaux maintiennent la pression

Les Européens, jusque là divisés et réticents à frapper un important partenaire commercial comme la Russie, ont adopté, à l'image des Etats-Unis, des sanctions sans précédent depuis la Guerre froide. Elles réduisent notamment l'accès des marchés financiers européens aux principales banques publiques russes, au risque de réduire leur capacité à financer une économie au bord de la récession.

A Washington, Barack Obama a dénoncé lors d'un entretien téléphonique vendredi avec Vladimir Poutine un soutien encore accru de Moscou aux séparatistes. Le Premier ministre britannique David Cameron a de son côté estimé samedi que l'Otan devait repenser sa relation à long terme avec la Russie et renforcer sa capacité à réagir rapidement à toute menace.

Selon des experts russes, le Kremlin peut difficilement reculer dans la crise ukrainienne face à une opinion galvanisée depuis le rattachement de la péninsule de  Crimée en mars, moins d'un mois après l'arrivée au pouvoir d'un gouvernement pro-occidental à Kiev.

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5 août 2014 2 05 /08 /août /2014 07:35
Gripen Makes Its Debut In Australia

05.08.2014 Saab Group

Gripen entered a new continent when the Royal Thai Air Force, RTAF, dispatched six of its twelve JAS 39 Gripen to the exercise Pitch Black 2014 in Australia, beginning 1 August and ending 22 August.

The Pitch Black exercise is held in a vast area in Northern Australia with Royal Australia Air Force (RAAF) Base Tindal as the main base, together with RAAF Base Darwin. 

All six RTAF Gripen left its base Wing 7 at Surat Thani in Thailand on July 29, with scheduled stops at Singapore and Bali before its arrival at RAAF Base Darwin on July 30. 

Seven countries take part in the exercise – the host RAAF, Royal New Zealand Air Force, the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF), the United States Air Force (USAF), RTAF, United Arab Emirates Air Force and the French Armed Forces in New Caledonia. 

Over 110 aircraft and 2,300 personnel from Australia, the US, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates and France are due to take part in the exercise, among them a range of fighter aircraft. The RTAF Gripen are joined by F-18 A Hornet and F-18 F Super Hornet from RAAF, F/A 16 from USAF, F-16 Falcon and F-15 SG Eagle from RSAF and Mirage 2000-9 from the United Arab Air Force. 

Besides a fighter fleet, several support aircraft play important roles during the exercise, for example tankers like the KC-135 Stratotanker and KC-30 Multirole Tanker. Two AEW aircraft join as well, one Gulfstream 550 Conformal Airborne Early Warning aircraft from RSAF and one Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) aircraft from RAAF.  

During Pitch Black 2014 participants will conduct Offensive Counter Air and Defensive Counter Air missions, launched from RAAF Bases Darwin and Tindal. Exercise participants will utilise the Delamere Range Facility and Bradshaw Field Training Area.

Mission scenarios will progressively become larger and more complicated through the course of the exercise, requiring mission commanders to factor in a variety of air combat roles.

You can read more on the official website of Exercise Pitch Black 2014 here


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10 juillet 2014 4 10 /07 /juillet /2014 16:35
Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office

Photo: Cabinet Public Relations Office


BEIJING, 8 juillet (Xinhua)


La Chine espère que le nouvel accord en matière de défense entre le Japon et l'Australie ne cible aucune partie tierce, a déclaré mardi le porte-parole du ministère chinois des Affaires étrangères Hong Lei.


M. Hong a indiqué lors d'une conférence de presse quotidienne que la coopération entre les deux pays devait apporter des contributions positives à la paix et à la stabilité régionales.


Selon Kyodo News, le Premier ministre japonais Shinzo Abe et son homologue australien Tony Abbott ont signé mardi des accords bilatéraux pour promouvoir la coopération dans les domaines des équipements, des technologies et des échanges liés à la défense.


Note RP Defense : source Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan

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8 juillet 2014 2 08 /07 /juillet /2014 16:35
MDA to continue surveillance service for Australian Defence Force


RICHMOND, BC, July 8, 2014 /CNW


MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd., a global communications and information company, today announced that it has been contracted by the Commonwealth of Australia to continue MDA's Unmanned Aerial Vehicle surveillance service for the Australian Defence Force in Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan until the end of 2014.

MDA has been supporting the Australian Forces by providing critically important real-time intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance information directly to ground commanders since January 2010.


About MDA

MDA is a global communications and information company providing operational solutions to commercial and government organizations worldwide.

MDA's business is focused on markets and customers with strong repeat business potential, primarily in the Communications sector and the Surveillance and Intelligence sector. In addition, the Company conducts a significant amount of advanced technology development.

MDA's established global customer base is served by more than 4,800 employees operating from 11 locations in the United States, Canada, and internationally.


Related Websites

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7 juillet 2014 1 07 /07 /juillet /2014 11:35
HMAS Sydney firing a SM2 missile - photo RAN

HMAS Sydney firing a SM2 missile - photo RAN



Jul 6, 2014 ASDNews Source : MoD Australia


Minister for Defence David Johnston today announced that Thales Australia Ltd has been awarded the Navy’s Adelaide Class guided missile frigate’s (FFG) Group Maintenance Contract.


Senator Johnston said the contract will be for an initial period of four and half years with the potential for contract extensions to an anticipated value of $130 million.


Read more

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7 juillet 2014 1 07 /07 /juillet /2014 11:35
Minister for Defence Formally Opens the Saab Advanced Maritime Systems Centre


3 July 2014 by Saab


Minister for Defence Senator the Hon David Johnston officially opened Saab’s Advanced Maritime Systems Centre in Adelaide this morning (3 July 2014 ).


The Advanced Maritime Systems Centre brings together all of the resources, skills and expertise which has made Saab Australia a world leader in naval combat systems. The Centre will be an important node within Saab’s global naval systems integration program.


“I am very pleased to officially open the Advanced Maritime Systems Centre. It has been fantastic to see the world-leading technology which Saab is developing right here in Adelaide. For example, the next generation of the Australian-developed 9LV Combat Management System, which has performed exceptionally as part of the Anti-Ship Missile Defence upgrade on the Navy’s ANZAC-class frigates, will be developed here at this facility,” Minister Johnston said.


The Advanced Maritime Systems Centre will employ over 100 home-grown Australian combat systems engineers, project managers, and software engineers. This is planned to expand to over 200 employees by 2020. The Advanced Maritime System Centre will make a significant contribution in terms of revenue to the South Australian economy over the next decade.


“We’re very proud that Adelaide is now a major contributor to Saab’s global combat systems integration capability,” said Mr Dean Rosenfield, Managing Director Saab Australia.


“In addition to being one of the leading fire control and missile integration systems centres in the world, the Advanced Maritime Systems Centre will also be a development hub for other naval programs, such as the next generation of the Integrated Ship Control Management and Monitoring System (ISCMMS) which Saab has developed for Australia’s Collins-class submarines.”


“I have been very pleased to see the progress which Saab has made in exporting defence technology. Saab Australia offers a fine demonstration of what Australian skills, technology and work ethic can achieve in a competitive international environment and the potential which the Advanced Maritime Systems Centre brings to Saab Australia’s capabilities is very exciting”, Minister Johnston said.


The Advanced Maritime Systems Centre will include Saab Australia’s 9LV Combat Management System Development and Integration program, Submarine Ship Control Systems Laboratory, Training and Simulation Node, Future Combat Systems Laboratory, and Missile and Fire Control Systems Laboratory which is the only facility of its kind in Australia.


Based in Mawson Lakes, Adelaide, the Advanced Maritime Systems Centre is located next to other key Defence research and development hubs, including the Defence Science and Technology Organisation’s offices at Edinburgh and the University of South Australia.

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7 juillet 2014 1 07 /07 /juillet /2014 07:35
ANAO releases damning report into ADF MRH90 program

The ANAO report into the MRH program point towards the definition phase of the project as the main cause of the delays. (NHI)


June 26 2014   by australianaviation.com.au


The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) has released a damning report into the acquisition and service introduction of the NHI/Australian Aerospace MRH90 helicopter which was acquired under Project AIR 9000 Phases 2, 4 & 6.


The acquisition of the MRH90 for all three phases of the project – to acquire an additional squadron of helicopters under Phase 2, to replace the S-70A-9 Black Hawks in service under Phase 4, and to replace Navy’s Sea Kings under Phase 6 – was a key component of the ADF’s Helicopter Strategic Master Plan which sought to reduce the number of helicopter types in ADF service from nine to five, and thus realise greater training, support and sustainment efficiencies.


Read full article

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4 juillet 2014 5 04 /07 /juillet /2014 06:35
Australians to study effects of electromagnetic compatibility and interference on F-35


July 3, 2014 by David Pugliese


A full-scale model of the F-35A Joint Strike Fighter will be used by the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) to study the effects of electromagnetic compatibility and interference on the aircraft, the Australian Ministry of Defence said in a news release.


More from the release:


Minister for Defence Senator David Johnston said the Australian-built model, known as Iron Bird, would be tested under simulated electromagnetic conditions during the acquisition and through-life sustainment of the JSF.


“The United States Joint Strike Fighter Program Office asked the DSTO to undertake this research, based on its world class expertise in investigating electromagnetic environmental effects,” Senator Johnston said.


During a visit to the DSTO laboratory in Adelaide, Senator Johnston said the testing by the DSTO will ensure the JSF is protected against electromagnetic environmental effects such as those caused by lightning and broadcast transmissions which can impair the performance and safety of aircraft.


The JSF is a fifth-generation aircraft with highly complex electronics, sophisticated software and a structural airframe made of composite materials to ensure stealth. These features expose the aircraft to electromagnetic interference from both naturally occurring phenomena and man-made sources, including telecommunication transmissions, radar and lightning strikes.


“The impact of these interferences needs to be well understood and appropriately managed,” Senator Johnston said.


“The data captured during DSTO testing will help in providing potential reductions in the cost of owning the JSF fleet and enhancing the aircraft’s capability.”


The DSTO test methods provide a rapid, cost-effective means of assessing and monitoring the JSF’s ability to withstand electromagnetic exposure and minimise any impact on its systems and performance.


Senator Johnston said DSTO’s research would support the verification for compliance and airworthiness certification for the JSF aircraft.


The Australian Government recently committed to buying an additional 58 JSF aircraft, bringing the fleet total to 72. Australia’s first two F-35As are due to be delivered to a United States-based training facility during 2014aEUR’15 when Royal Australian Air Force pilot and maintainer training will begin on the aircraft.


Senator Johnston said because Australia had entered the program at the development phase, Australian companies have gained $357.6 million in production orders with only about 2-3 per cent of the production F-35A aircraft manufactured.


About 30 Australian companies are directly involved in doing business with JSF primes, with many more Australian companies as sub-contractors.

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1 juillet 2014 2 01 /07 /juillet /2014 16:35
photo Raytheon

photo Raytheon


1 July 2014 naval-technology.com


The Australian Department of Defence (DoD) has agreed to continue its support of Raytheon's Evolved Sea Sparrow missile system (ESSM) upgrade, as part of the Nato Sea Sparrow Consortium.


The upgraded ESSM version, which will be deployed by the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), has been developed to protect vessels against advanced missile threats, while delivering a sophisticated ship self-defence missile.


As part of the plan, Australia will allocate $300m for the missile modernisation programme.


Australian Defence Minister Senator David Johnston said that the move is intended to ensure the safety and effectiveness of RAN's operations.


"The upgrade of the Evolved Sea Sparrow missile system follows on from a number of complementary Anzac-class frigate upgrade projects," Johnston said.


Primarily focused on developing enhancements to the missile's guidance system, the block two upgrade of the ESSM is to be integrated into RAN's Anzac-class frigates and Hobart-class destroyers.


"These arrangements will also offer significant opportunities for Australian industry to compete for work in the development, production, integration and through-life support of the upgraded block two missiles," Johnston added.


"The government expects to make a final decision on [the] procurement of upgraded ESSMs around 2020. The government is keen to ensure that every ESSM block two missile that is eventually produced will provide work for Australian industry."


Capable of being launched without any prior warm-up, the missile system can strike high-speed, highly manoeuvrable anti-ship cruise missiles, as well as threats from surface and low-velocity air areas, while boosting performance against smaller, sea-skimming targets.


The Nato Sea Sparrow consortium comprises Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, and the US.

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27 juin 2014 5 27 /06 /juin /2014 07:35
La Royal Australian Navy en formation sur MRH-90!


25/06/2014 avia news


La Royal Australian Navy (RAN) a débuté la formation de ses équipages d’hélicoptère MRH-90 en vue de l’utilisation sur navire amphibie (LHD). Ce début de formation en vue d’une utilisation du nouvel hélicoptère depuis des bâtiments de surface s’effectue depuis un simulateur de pont d’envol.


Suite de l’article

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20 juin 2014 5 20 /06 /juin /2014 16:35
Thales launches export version of the Hawkei at Eurosatory 2014


20.06.2014 Thales

During Eurosatory 2014, Thales is displaying its new export version of the Hawkei Light Protected Mobility vehicle. The highly innovative, next generation LPM vehicle, designed and
manufactured in Australia, was built with saving lives in mind. Based on the pedigree of the iconic Thales Bushmaster, the Hawkei provides class-leading protection, mobility and payload, while meeting customers' complex operational challenges.

The 7-tonne, 4x4 Hawkei is designed for rapid airmobile deployment. Available in a variety of variants including Command, Reconnaissance, Liaison and Utility, it is a compelling choice for operations with limited point-of-entry options.

The Hawkei has already proven to be a success in Australia, where, in 2013, six Hawkei vehicles were delivered to the Australian Department of Defence under Stage 2 of the

Manufactured and Supported in Australia option of the Land 121 Phase 4 programme. The vehicles, comprising two Command, two Utility and two Reconnaissance vari... (plus)

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16 juin 2014 1 16 /06 /juin /2014 07:35
Export Hawkei on show at Eurosatory

“We developed Hawkei to appeal to the global market from the outset, based on class-leading foundations of protection, mobility and payload combined at an affordable price point. These ensure the vehicle can be readily configured to meet the specific needs of countries looking to keep their soldiers safe on operations”.

Chris Jenkins, CEO Thales Australia.


16th June, Thales Press


An export version of Thales’s innovative Hawkei light protected vehicle will be on display at Eurosatory, the largest international land and air-land defence and security exhibition in Paris this week.

The brand new left-hand drive version will be appearing in the live demonstration zone, offering potential international customers a first opportunity to see the vehicle in action.

A right-hand drive version will also be on the Thales stand, along with many of the company’s other capabilities.


Chris Jenkins said: “The Hawkei’s bolted modular design enables Thales to support technology transfer to countries where industrialisation can be performed at lower cost, giving customers the opportunity to develop their own in-country protected mobility capabilities and skills.”


The 7-tonne, 4x4 Hawkei is designed for rapid airmobile deployment.

Available in a variety of variants including command, reconnaissance, liaison and utility, it is a compelling choice for operations with limited point-of-entry options.

In 2013 Thales delivered six Hawkeis to the Australian Department of Defence under Stage 2 of the Manufactured and Supported in Australia option of Land 121 Phase 4. The vehicles, comprising two Command, two Utility and two Reconnaissance variants, plus a trailer, have been subject to an extensive 130,000 km testing programme.


The LAND 121 Phase 4 programme plans to acquire 1,300 Hawkei vehicles next year to replace the current Australian Army Land Rover fleet.

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