QTC Tapped For Reserve Health Readiness Program Services | France Withdraws Troops From Iraq | Australia Still Planning To Hold Pitch Black
QTC Medical Service won A $999 million contract to provide commercial health services for the Reserve Health Readiness Program-III. The Reserve Health Readiness Program is a Department of Defense, Defense Health Agency program that helps to supplement the Reserve Components’ readiness mission and satisfy key deployment requirements by providing medical and dental services to all Reserve Component forces. The Defense Health Agency established the program for military reserve components to access periodic health assessment, post-deployment health reassessment and individual medical readiness services. The Army Contracting Command received three bids for the Reserve Health Readiness Program-III support contract via an online solicitation. Work locations as well as funding will be determines with each order. Estimated completion date is March 25, 2025.
Sikorsky Aircraft won a $125.4 million for a firm-fixed-price advanced acquisition contract to procure long lead items for low-rate initial production of the seven Lot 5 CH-53K heavy-lift aircraft. The CH-53K is designed to transport US Marines, heavy equipment and supplies from amphibious assaults to destinations ashore. Work will take place in Stratford, Connecticut. Expected completion will be by August 2021.
Middle East & Africa
Several european countries have announced the temporary withdrawal of their troops from the anti-Islamic State (IS) coalition and NATO Training Mission in Iraq. The withdrawals follow an announcement by Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR) on March 20 that it had ceased training Iraqi security forces to reduce the spread of COVID-19 following a decision by the Iraqi military to suspend its own training. The French Armed Forces Ministry announced that it would withdraw about 100 troops involved in the training ‘pillar’ of Operation ‘Chammal’ in Iraq and national support elements from the OIR headquarters in Baghdad the next day until the situation allows the resumption of these activities. However, the ministry said it would continue the fight against Islamic State with personnel in OIR structures in Kuwait and Qatar, the French maritime deployment, and air support from Jordan and Qatar.
Germany has decided to adopt the American F/A-18F Super Hornet as well as additional fighters of the Eurofighter Typhoon. for their recent program to acquire a strike fighter to replace their fleet of Panavia Tornados. Currently, German plans to procure ninety Eurofighters, and forty-five Super Hornets to replace ninety Tornados. The Super Hornet also has a dedicated electronic warfare variant, the EA-18 Growler, of which fifteen will be procured as part of the contract.
Japan’s defense minister Taro Kono told reporters on March 27 that his ministry will decide on the development of the successor to the F-2 fighter by end of this year. Kono said Tokyo is still undecided between selecting US or UK as joint development partners. He said the new fighter needs to have strong network capabilities and carry more missiles than the F-35.
Australia is still planning to hold exercise Pitch Black at RAAF Darwin in July despite the current COVID-19 travel restrictions, Australian Defence reports. Besides the usual participants from South East Asia, Japan Air Self Defense Force is expected to make its exercise debut by sending its F-2 fighters there. However, the exercise could still be canceled as the Australian Defense Department is reevaluating the status of upcoming events. “In line with the advice of the Chief Medical Officer and Australian Government, Defense is currently reconsidering the status of its upcoming events, including Exercise Pitch Black to ensure the safety of personnel involved“, a spokesperson said.
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