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Defence News – January

Israeli Air Force Receives First Anti-Missile Interceptors for Arrow 3 System

i. The first anti-missile interceptors for the Arrow 3 Missile Defense System was inducted into the Israel Defense Forces on January 18, 2017 by both Israel’s Defense Ministry and the US Missile Defense Agency during a ceremony held on the Palmachim Air Base.

ii. Each Arrow 3 Missile is estimated to cost about $2.2 million. They have been designed to enable interception of ballistic missiles beyond the earth’s atmosphere. Interception at that altitude enables missiles carrying nuclear warheads to be blocked farther from Israel and stops the enemy missile to harm the territory.

iii. The Arrow-3 interceptor is a part of Israel’s Arrow weapon system (AWS) and has been jointly developed by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), U.S. Department of Defense’s Missile Defense Agency and Boeing.

BSF launches operation ‘SardHawa’ at Rajasthan border

i. Border Security Force (BSF) has launched its 14 day operation SardHawa at the western international border of Rajasthan on January 15, 2017 to check the instances of infilteration due to the dense fog in the area.

ii. Aim: To keep a hawks eye on the international border, where vigil has been beefed-up and officers have also been asked to be part of operation to motivate jawans.

iii. The operation will end on January 28, 2017.

Pakistan Navy Receives Two Ships From China to Ensure Security along Gwadar Port

i. China has handed over two ships to Pakistan Navy on January 15, 2017 in order to ensure joint security along the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and the Gwadar port.

ii. The two ships were received by the Pakistan Navy Vice Admiral ArifullahHussaini at a ceremony held at Gwadar port.

iii. The ships named Hingol and Basol gets its name from nearby rivers in Pakistan. China will provide two more ships to Pakistan Navy named Dasht and Zhob after two districts in Balochistan.

INS Khanderi, Second Scorpene Class Submarine Launched in Mumbai

i. INS Khanderi, India’s second French-designed Scorpene-class diesel-electric attack submarine was launched in Mumbai on January 12, 2017 at the Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL).

ii. The Submarine was launched by BinaBhamre, wife of the Union Minister of State (MoS) for Defence, SubhashBhamre in the presence of Chief of the Naval Staff, Admiral Sunil Lanba.

Chinese Navy Commissions Sophisticated Ship CNS Kaiyangxing into its Fleet

i. The China’s Navy commissioned a sophisticated electronic reconnaissance ship CNS Kaiyangxing or Mizar to North Sea Fleet in Qingdao, Shandong province on January 10, 2017.

ii. The new ship with hull code 856 is capable of conducting all-weather, round-the-clock observation on multiple targets. The ship is so sophisticated that only a few countries, such as the US and Russia, are capable of developing it.

iii. The Kaiyangxing is a Type 815A electronic reconnaissance ship, with displacement of 6,000 metric tons and a maximum speed of 20 knots or 37 kilometers per hour.

Guided Pinaka Rocket Successfully Test-Fired by India

i. India successfully test-fired the Guided Pinaka Rocket from Launch Complex-III of the Integrated Test Range (ITR) launch pad at Chandipur off coast Odisha.

ii. With the test-firing all the mission objectives were successfully met. All the radars, electro optical and telemetry systems at Chandipur tracked and monitored the weapon all through the 
flight path.

iii. The Guided Pinaka is a modified version of the Pinaka rocket mark-II which has evolved from Pinaka Mark-I. Pinaka rocket mark-II is equipped with a navigation, guidance and control kit. The modified version has considerably enhanced the strike range and accuracy of Pinaka.

iv. The Guided Pinaka is developed jointly by Armament Research & Development Establishment (ARDE), Research Centre Imarat (RCI) and Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL).

Indian Navy’s Theatre Level Exercise, TROPEX 17 Begins

i. The Theatre Readiness Operational Exercise (TROPEX), an annual Indian Navy exercise kicked started on January 24, 2017 off the Western Seaboard. The last edition of the exercise was conducted in January 2015.

ii. The exercise will be conducted in phased manner both in harbour and at sea to undertake tasks of war-fighting and combat operations. The exercise will strengthen the inter-operability and joint operations of the Indian Navy in a complex environment.

iii. The month long exercise will see the participation of ships and aircraft of both the Western and Eastern Naval Commands and assets from the Indian Air Force, Indian Army and the Indian Coast Guard exercising together.

INS Vikramaditya Becomes India’s First Warship to Have ATM Onboard

i. INS Vikramaditya, India’s biggest aircraft carrier ship has become the country’s first warship to have an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) onboard the vessel.

ii. The ATM has been installed by the State Bank of India (SBI) and will become operational from January 21, 2017. It will be operated through satellite link.

China Commissions its 31st Stealth Warship

i. In a move to rapidly expand its naval fleet, China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy commissioned its 31st stealth warship on January 22, 2017.

ii. With the commissioning of the 31st Type—056 class corvette warship, CNS Ezhou, China has become the world’s largest fleet of modern corvettes.

iii. The CNS Ezhou with a hull number of 513 was delivered to the East Sea Fleet in a naval base in East China’s Fujian province on January 18, 2017. It is 89 meters long and 11 m wide and has a full displacement of 1,254 metric tons.

Guided Pinaka test fired successfully again

i. The Guided Pinaka was successfully test fired from the Launch Complex-III, ITR, Chandipur for a further enhanced range.

ii. The Pinaka Rocket Mark-II, equipped with Navigation, guidance and control kit, was transformed into a guided Pinaka.

iii. The conversion has facilitated to enhance the range and improve the accuracy of Pinaka.

Pakistan Successfully Conducts First Flight Test of N- Capable Ababeel Missile

i. Pakistan successfully conducted the first test flight of the surface-to-surface ballistic missile (SSM), ‘Ababeel’ on January 24, 2017.

ii. The radar-evading Ababeel has the capablility of carrying a nuclear warhead up to 2,200 kms and deliver multiple warheads using Multiple Independent Re-entry Vehicle (MIRV) technology.

Whatsapp helpline Luanched by Army Chief Gen. Bipin Rawat launches to Address grievances of Army personnel

i. The Chief of Army staff Gen Bipin Rawat launched a Whatsapp helpline number on January 27, 2017 to receive grievances of army personnel.

ii. Several soldiers posted their grievances on social media about the food that was being served to them and the conditions that they were put in as a result the army chief took the decision of launching the watsapp service.

iii. The Whatsapp number where soldiers can post their complaints is +91 9643300008. The number will be shared with all soldiers and the number will remain at Rawat’s office.

Indian Navy Issues RFI to procure 57 Carrier-Borne Fighter Jets

i. According to IHS Jane’s Defense Weekly, the Indian Navy has officially issued a Request for Information (RFI) on January 17, 2017 to procure new carrier-based multirole warplane.

ii. The Navy intends to procure 57 naval fighter aircraft from a foreign supplier for its rapidly growing fleet of aircraft carriers. The government also wants to manufacture these planes in India under Indian Prime Minister’s Modi’s Make in India initiative and tender has asked the original equipment manufacturers to respond to it.

iii. Responses are due by May 24, 2017. Delivery of the first aircraft is expected to begin three years following the inking of a contract and completed withinthree additional years.

India Successfully Test Fires Agni IV Ballistic Missile off Odisha Coast

India successfully conducted the test firing of the nuclear-capable strategic ballistic missile, Agni IV from the Abdul Kalam Island, Balasore, off the Odisha coast on January 2, 2017 at about 
11.50 a.m.

i. Agni IV is a two-stage solid-propelled, surface-to-surface ballistic missile which is designed to carry a payload of 1-tonne up to a distance of 4,000 km.

ii. Designed and developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) the missile is 20 meters in length and weighs 17 tonnes.

Pakistan Successfully Test-Fires Submarine-Launched Nuclear-Capable Missile’

i. Pakistan successfully test-fired its first Submarine-Launched Cruise Missile (SLCM), Babur-3, on January 9, 2017 from Indian Ocean.

ii. The missile Babur-3 which was fired from an underwater, mobile platform, hit the target with precise accuracy. It is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead up to 450km

iii. Babur-3 is a sea-based variant of Ground Launched Cruise Missile (GLCM) Babur-2, which was successfully tested earlier in December 2016.

Indian Army conducted trials of Indigenous Artillery Gun System Dhanush in the Himalayas

i. The Indian Army is successfully conducted the user-validation trials of indigenous artillery gun Dhanush in the Himalayas so that they are ready to be inducted into the Army.

ii. The exercise is being conducted under the aegis of the Srinagar-based 15 Corps and the Leh-based 14 Corps. The 15 Corps is tasked to face Pakistan while the 14 Corps is tasked to face Pakistan as well as China.

Ministry of Defence to Set up Rs 1500 cr Defence Unit in Madhya Pradesh

i. The Union Minister for Panchayati Raj and Rural Development, Narendra Singh Tomar announced on January 31, 2017 that the Ministry of Defence is set to open its Defence Unit in Morena district of Madhya Pradesh.

ii. The unit would be set up in Kailaras and Sabalgarh tehsil areas and span over 969.735 hectare of land at a cost of Rs. 1500 crore.

Reliance Defence Signs Contract with Ministry of Defence to Construct 14 Fast patrol Vessels for Indian Coast Guard

i. Reliance Defence and Engineering Ltd (RDEL), a wholly owned arm of Reliance Infrastructure Ltd (RInfra), has signed a contract worth Rs. 916 crore with the Ministry of Defence on January 30, 2017 to design and construct 14 Fast Patrol Vessels for the Indian Coast Guard.

ii. The medium range, high speed vessels would be deployed for patrolling within the exclusive economic zone, costal surveillance, anti-smuggling, anti-piracy, search and rescue operations. It will also provide support as front-line warships during emergencies.

iii. RDEL is the first private sector shipyard which has been awarded a contract of designing and building such ships for Indian Armed Force

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FAQs on January 2017 -Defence News - Current Affairs

1. What are the major defence news highlights in January 2017?
Ans. In January 2017, some of the major defence news highlights include the inauguration of Donald Trump as the President of the United States, the ongoing conflicts in Syria and Iraq, the escalating tensions between North Korea and the international community, and the ongoing battle against ISIS.
2. What role does the President of the United States play in defence matters?
Ans. The President of the United States is the Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. military and plays a crucial role in defence matters. They have the authority to make decisions regarding military operations, deployments, and the overall defence strategy of the country.
3. What are the current conflicts in Syria and Iraq?
Ans. The current conflicts in Syria and Iraq are primarily driven by the fight against ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria). Various international and regional actors are involved in these conflicts, including the United States, Russia, Turkey, Iran, and several militia groups.
4. What are the main concerns regarding North Korea's defence capabilities?
Ans. North Korea's defence capabilities have raised concerns internationally due to its nuclear weapons program, ballistic missile tests, and aggressive rhetoric. The country's unpredictable leadership and the potential threat it poses to regional stability are major concerns for the international community.
5. How is the international community combating ISIS?
Ans. The international community is combating ISIS through various means, including military operations, intelligence sharing, economic sanctions, and diplomatic efforts. The coalition led by the United States has been conducting airstrikes against ISIS targets in Iraq and Syria, while also supporting local forces on the ground.
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