21 Mei 2018

AFP Plans Naval Base, Backs Research at Philippine Rise

21 Mei 2018

BRP Gregorio Velasquez (AGR-702) survey ship (photo : CNN)

ABOARD BRP DAVAO DEL SUR — The Armed Forces of the Philippines wants to build a naval base in Casiguran to guard against foreign intrusions on Philippine Rise off the coast of Aurora province.

“That is on the planning board,” Lt. Gen. Emmanuel Salamat, the head of the Northern Luzon Command, said on Wednesday.

Salamat said he also proposed the upgrade of port facilities to maintain the military’s presence in order to support efforts “to secure, preserve and conserve our rich resources here in Philippine Rise.”

Big ships, such as frigates and strategic sealift vessels like the BRP Davao del Sur, were needed to patrol the vast region.

“All area commands require this kind of [naval] platform to be able to ensure the protection and preservation of our natural resources and secure our territory,” he pointed out.

He hoped that the national government would provide the resources to improve the AFP’s “sea power.”

Big ships, such as frigates and strategic sealift vessels like the BRP Davao del Sur, were needed to patrol the vast region.

The Navy also will be backing scientific research.

Support committed

“All area commands require this kind of [naval] platform to be able to ensure the protection and preservation of our natural resources and secure our territory,” he pointed out.

Philippine Rise (photo : GMA)

He hoped that the national government would provide the resources to improve the AFP’s “sea power.”

The Navy also will be backing scientific research at Philippine Rise.

Defense Undersecretary Cardozo Luna said President Duterte has committed support to underwater researchers and would be given full use of the BRP Gregorio Velasquez, a research vessel capable of conducting oceanographic and hydrographic survey.

“Just make a request and the Navy, the Coast Guard, our boats are ready,” Luna said.

The ship was commissioned by the Navy in June 2016. It was named after a Philippine physiology pioneer and national scientist, Gregorio Velasquez.

Then US President Barack Obama committed to provide the ship to the Philippines during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in 2015.

Gil Jacinto of the University of the Philippines Marine Science Institute said he hoped that the research to be undertaken on Philippine Rise would be institutionalized.

“Work here will take us not only a couple of years, it will take decades. It is not for our generation only, it is for the next generation,” Jacinto explained.

The rise is a submarine prolongation of Luzon, extending up to 589 kilometers from the eastern Philippine seaboard. Its reefscapes—containing corals, algae, sponges and Halimeda—sustain a variety of fish including the Pacific bluefin tuna.

Its seabed is believed to hold cobalt-rich ferromanganese crusts, hydrothermal polymetallic sulfides and gas hydrates.


ADF Trains with Partners at Ex BERSAMA SHIELD 2018

21 Mei 2018

HMAS Toowoomba and Royal Malaysian Navy ship KD Lekir (26) dispatch their boarding parties in Toowoomba's rigid hull inflatable boats during Exercise BERSAMA SHIELD 2018. (photos : RAN)

The Australian Defence Force (ADF) has taken to the sea and skies of Malaysia and Singapore to enhance interoperability and strengthen the professional relationships of the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA) nations.

Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom participated in the bi-annual Exercise BERSAMA SHIELD 18, focusing on the conduct of a combined joint maritime, land and air operations in a multi-threat environment.

Chief of Joint Operations, Vice Admiral David Johnston, said the ADF’s ongoing support to Exercise Bersama Shield 18 is another example of Australia’s commitment to regional security and stability.

“This exercise allowed us to build on our already strong relationship with the FPDA nations,” Vice Admiral Johnston said.

“The FPDA has fostered successful, practical cooperation amongst its members for close to 50 years. Exercise BERSAMA SHIELD demonstrated the continued commitment by all members to pursuing closer interoperability.” 

The exercise involves approximately 440 ADF personnel, Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C Orion maritime patrol and King Air aircraft, and Royal Australian Navy Ships HMAS Toowoomba and HMAS Success. 

Exercise BERSAMA SHIELD 18 was conducted from 27 April to 15 May 2018. The next exercise in the series, Exercise BERSAMA LIMA, will occur in October 2018.


Koopsusgab di Bawah Panglima TNI, tapi Bisa Dikendalikan Kapolri

21 Mei 2018

Pasukan khusus TNI (photo : Kompas)

Komando Operasi Khusus Gabungan (Koopsusgab) yang rencananya dibentuk oleh pemerintah akan di bawah wewenang Panglima TNI.

Namun, pada saat diminta Polri untuk memberantas aksi terorisme, tim khusus tersebut akan dikendalikan oleh kepala Polri.

Hal itu dikatakan Wakil Ketua Panitia Khusus Revisi Undang-Undang Antiterorisme Supiadin Aries Saputra saat menjadi narasumber diskusi di Cikini, Jakarta Pusat, Sabtu (19/5/2018).

Menurut Supiadin, saat Koopsusgab diminta untuk membantu Detasemen Khusus Antiteror 88 Pori, maka segala risiko dan tanggung jawab ada di tangan Kapolri.

Dalam situasi itu, Panglima TNI dapat memonitor dan memberi masukkan.

Namun, saat Koopsusgab tidak sedang membantu Polri, maka kegiatan operasi berada di kendali Panglima TNI.

"Kalau suatu saat terjadi terorisme di darat, laut dan udara, di situ lah dia (Koopsusgab) berdiri sendiri. Karena sudah ada di undang-undang bahwa TNI bisa mengatasi terorisme," kata Supiadin.

Presiden Joko Widodo sebelumnya membenarkan bahwa saat ini pemerintah dalam proses mengaktifkan kembali Koopsusgab TNI.

Presiden menegaskan, pengaktifan kembali Koopsusgab TNI itu demi memberikan rasa aman bagi seluruh rakyat Indonesia dari para pelaku teror.

Meski demikian, Jokowi menegaskan Koopsusgab TNI itu nantinya baru turun tangan dalam situasi kegentingan tertentu.

Para personel TNI terlatih itu berasal dari sejumlah satuan elite matra darat, laut dan udara dipanggil secara khusus untuk membantu Polri melaksanakan tugas pemberantasan terorisme.

Diketahui, pertama kali, Koopsusgab dibentuk saat Moeldoko menjabat sebagai Panglima TNI pada Juni 2015. Namun, beberapa waktu kemudian dibekukan.


Philippine Navy’s Jacinto Class on Track to Conclude Combat Systems Restoration in 2018

21 Mei 2018

BRP Emilio Jacinto PS-35 (photo : Philippine Navy)

A third phase to extend service life of the Philippine Navy’s Jacinto-class corvettes is expected to complete by end-2018. Restorations are expected to cap a multiphase series of upgrade efforts that have been ongoing since the mid-2000s.

A project to restore combat systems of the Philippine Navy’s fleet of three Jacinto (Peacock)-class corvettes is on track for completion by end-2018.

The restoration and sustainment works are done under Phase 3 of a service life extension programme (SLEP) that began in the mid-2000s. Under this stage, which has been further divided into Phase 3A and Phase 3B due to fiscal considerations, weapons and fire-control systems on each of the vessels are being repaired and refurbished with new components where required.


19 Mei 2018

Launch of Third Air Warfare Destroyer HMAS Sydney

19 Mei 2018

HMAS Sydney 42, third Air Warfare Destroyer (all photos : Aus AWD)

Today’s launch and formal naming of the third and final Air Warfare Destroyer, Sydney, showcases the success of the AWD Program.

The milestone marks a 60 per cent productivity improvement from the first ship to the third ship since the implementation of the Government-led reform initiative.

Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, said today’s achievement shows the strength of the shipbuilding and systems integration skills which have been developed by the AWD Program.

“Today we celebrate the highly skilled workers from ASC, Raytheon Australia, Navantia Australia and Defence,” Minister Pyne said.

“It’s difficult to imagine just ten years ago, this shipyard at Osborne was a brownfield site with no infrastructure.”

“Since then more than 5,000 people have worked directly on the AWD Program to build and integrate three of the most capable and potent warships the Navy has ever possessed.”

“This is underpinned by the 1,500 suppliers who have supported the AWD Alliance in its efforts to exceed Australian Industry Capability targets for the overall Program.”

The lessons, skills and experience developed throughout the AWD Program will deliver low risk solutions and real cost savings for Australia’s future complex naval programs.

“The AWD Alliance is on track to deliver the second ship Brisbane to the Commonwealth in coming months, followed by the delivery of Sydney next year.”

(Aus DoD)

Indonesia Terus Negosiasikan Program Pesawat Tempur KF-X/IF-X

19 Mei 2018

Pesawat tempur IF-X (photo : Defense Studies)

Menteri Pertahanan Ryamizard Ryacudu mengungkapkan kelanjutan program pembuatan pesawat tempur Korean Fighter Xperiment/Indonesia Fighter Xperiment (KF-X/IF-X) yang merupakan kerja sama Indonesia- Korea Selatan terus dinegosiasikan.

“Kami negosiasikan terus,” kata dia dalam perbincangan dengan Antara di Kementerian Pertahanan RI, Jakarta, Jumat.

Beberapa waktu lalu proyek bertotal investasi 8 miliar dollar AS itu diklaim sudah masuk tahap engineering manufactur development (EMD). Namun, kelanjutan program yang dibiayai Korea Selatan 80 persen dan Indonesia 20 persen itu masih dinegosiasikan.

Penelusuran Antara, pengembangan pesawat menghadapi kendala pengadaan beberapa komponen yang lisensinya dimiliki Amerika Serikat.

Korea Selatan dan Indonesia sejatinya mencoba menyiasati kendala itu dengan berkolaborasi dengan negara-negara di Eropa untuk pengadaan komponen itu.

Kerja sama pengembangan jet tempur generasi 4,5 ini telah dimulai sejak 2016.

Ditargetkan pada 2019 prototipe pesawat tempur ini sudah diproduksi. Kemudian, pesawat dapat diluncurkan dan bisa terbang pada 2021. Pada 2026, diharapkan pesawat tempur KFX/IFX bisa mendapatkan sertifikat.

“Kita sedang negosiasikan terus, agar dapat segera diputuskan,” kata Ryamizard.

Ryamizard mengatakan kekuatan militer yang memadai harus dimiliki Indonesia untuk memperkuat posisi tawar Indonesia di tingkat regional dan global.

DoD Plam to Upgrades its Explosive Ordnance Facility

19 Mei 2018

Ammunition, propellants, explosives and related services for ADF is suppplied by local companies, which the largest supplier is Australian Munitions a business of Thales Australia Limited (photo : Australian Munitions)

Local industry to benefit from Explosive Ordnance facility upgrades

The Turnbull Liberal Government’s investment in the Fort Direction Explosive Ordnance facility south of Hobart is set to provide a welcome boost to local firms.

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, and Liberal Senator for Tasmania, Senator the Hon Eric Abetz, today announced that Hansen Yuncken, based in Hobart, has been appointed as the Medium Works Contractor for the construction of the new facilities at Fort Direction.

The $2.8 million project to build a new administration building at the Fort Direction Depot is part of the Turnbull Liberal Government’s new Local Industry Capability Plan initiative, which is ensuring that local businesses and trades have the best opportunity possible to secure work on Defence infrastructure projects.

“As part of the Local Industry Capability Plan, Hansen Yuncken, has committed to sourcing 95 per cent of its contractors from the local area. This is will ensure that the majority of the $2.8 million invested in Fort Direction stays in the Tasmanian economy, creating jobs and supporting local industry,” Minister Payne said.

“This project is the first of the Local Industry Capability Plan pilots to be implemented and it is pleasing to see that such a high percentage of works will be sourced from local Tasmanian businesses and suppliers.”

“This project will help the ADF to implement the capability plans set out in the Turnbull Government’s 2016 Defence White Paper as part of our $200 billion investment in Defence capability.”

Senator Abetz said that Tasmanian small and medium sized businesses have the capability to undertake the work at Fort Direction necessary to support Defence requirements.

“Tasmanian businesses are some of the best in Australia and I have no doubt that the managing contractor will be able to achieve the 95 per cent target of local businesses and trades on this important project,” Senator Abetz said.

“The Federal Liberal Government’s commitment to backing local Tasmanian workers will help to add to Tasmania’s economic recovery which has seen more than 13,000 Tasmanians find work since 2013 while delivering Defence capability for our nation.”

“The Tasmanian Liberal Senate Team, along with Braddon Liberal candidate Brett Whiteley, will continue to work hard for all Tasmanians to ensure they can secure work as the Federal and State Liberal Governments work in partnership to invest and grow our state.”

The 2018-19 Budget confirms that the Turnbull Liberal Government is committed to keeping our nation safe and secure and will grow Defence spending to two per cent of GDP by 2020-21.