Wednesday, August 11, 2010

DTN News: Singapore National Day Parade August 9, 2010 - Fireworks & Celebration

DTN News: Singapore National Day Parade August 9, 2010 - Fireworks & Celebration
* Our staff editor dedicate this article on his past gorgeous and incredible memories of the stunning Island of Singapore; DTN News Source: DTN News - - This article compiled by Roger Smith from reliable sources including Media & Military of Malaysia blog
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - August 11, 2010: Every year Singapore celebrates National Day on August 9 with parade and fireworks. In this year, Singapore National Day Parade 2010 helds at Padang. This year, it is 45th birthday of Singapore. In Singapore National Day Parade, the Singapore Armed Forces, school choir will perform with death-defying stunts. During the evening, amazing fireworks will be displayed that light up the city skyline. The National Day Parade is held at Padang or National Stadium every year. The state commemorates this day in order to rejoice the day of its independence from Malaysia. Singapore gained independence from Malaysia in 1965. The Independence Day celebrations are incomplete without the National Day Parade. This parade is an essential element of the celebrations of this special day. The first National Day Parade was held in the year 1966. National Day Parade 2007 was occurred in Marina Bay for the first time. It was decided that future parades will be happened there until the new sports hub is completed in around 2014-2016. The 2010 Summer Youth Olympics opening will be held at Marina Bay, due to this reason the National Day Parade 2010 will be held at Padang. This year, theme of Singapore National Day Parade is ‘Live Our Dreams, Fly Our Flags’. Corrinne May, a Singaporean singer-songwriter will compose and perform the Theme Song for Singapore’s National Day 2010 which titled “Song For Singapore“. A dance version of the theme song which will be sung by Singapore Idols Sezairi Sezali and Sylvia Ratonel during the Parade & Ceremony after the Prime Minister takes his seat at the Padang. Colonel Benedict Lim, the Chairman of NDP Executive Committee, said in a press statement yesterday: “2010 marks the 45th year of Singapore’s independence – a defining and significant milestone in the Singapore story. Flying our flag as a symbol of nationhood and hope is a yearly act for most of us during the National Day celebrations period. But this year we want Singaporeans to go beyond that by taking some time to reflect upon the nation’s achievements in a short span of 4 years, including social cohesion, racial and religious harmony, and how the nation had lifted itself time and again out of crisis. We want them to be inspired to live their dreams.”
This is a self-PROPELLED SYSTEM gun "Primus" Made in Singapore
IMAGES OF SECOND VEHICLE carrier is a type of bridge NAME OF VEHICLES BUT FAILED pontoon identified
THIS VEHICLE is a type name is not known amphibians
SIXTH IMAGES OF VEHICLES AARDVARK is dedicated to the Elimination of Landmines
SINGAPORE crew and engineers inspect the engine Singapore-made armored vehicles, BIONIX
Notice the tank turret WITH NEW type of reactive armor
IMAGES Sixteenth, armored vehicles SINGAPORE OLD TYPE Cadillac Cage V200 SYSTEM WITH ANTI Tank Missile Matador (artificial SINGAPORE)

The theme is ‘Live Our Dreams, Fly Our Flag’. The idea of the theme appeared that someone wishing upon a shooting star which is in charge of branding NDP 2010 for the designers at FARM. Thus, the charming idea for NDP 2010’s logo was produced.

The logo has the five stars of the Singapore flag in their original ensemble. In the national flag, the shooting motion of the stars resembles the movement of the hemispherical moon. The logo ties in neatly with this year’s theme and all elements of the Singapore flag are described.

Colonel Benedict Lim said, “It captures our collective hope for a better future and expresses our pride for the nation. Fly the flag in the literal sense of waving it at national events, and also in the figurative sense of being proud of Singapore, behaving in a manner that would do the country proud and showcasing Singapore to the world”. Parade & Ceremony: In this year, the thirty contingents will join the Parade & Ceremony segment of the NDP. The Parade & Ceremony segment represents five pillars of the total defence including Military Defence, Civil Defence, Economic Defence, Social Defence and Psychological Defence. The 5 military and home team contingents from the Army, Navy, Airforce, Singapore Police Force and Singapore Civil Defence Force represent the military and civil defence. The ten Uniformed Youth Organisations (UYOs) is structured by the Scouts, Girl Guides, Boys and Girls Brigade, Red Cross, St John, National Civil Defence Cadet Corps, National Police Cadet Corps, and the National Cadet Corps represents the psychological defence. There will be 10 social and economic groups from the PAP, NTUC, HDB, PUB, SingTel, SATS, ERA, Keppel Corp, Sembcorp Industries and Sembcorp Marine which represents the social and economical defence. There are four guards of honour groups from the 3 services of the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) and the Singapore Police Force. The crowds wear red, so whether you are at the event or watching it on one of the many big screens around the country, get into the spirit by buying one of the red t-shirts that are on sale around Singapore. In Combined Band contingent, the students from the NCC Band combining with members from the SAF Band and Police Band will participate to offer the resounding beat for the participants. From Army Headquarters, Lieutenant-Colonel Lek Seng Khoon will be the Parade Commander and from SAFTI Military Institute, Master Warrant Officer Albert Chen will be the Parade RSM. The audiences will be treated to the Aerial Display and Mobile Column recitals that take place in NDP once every five years, after the striding out from the Padang. For Singaporeans, Firework will shoot off from nine different locations including commercial buildings other than the parade ground, the rooftop of City Hall and the Marina Bay waters, the Esplanade, Suntec Tower, Pan Pacific Hotel, Ritz Carlton, UOB Tower and Maybank, all of which make for great vantage points for those who want to catch a quick look of the fireworks besides the Padang fields. At the Padang, audiences will be allowed in the heartlands to interact and engage with the activities. To view that special view of the parade and fireworks, many have splurged on hotel rooms and restaurants at celebrations centre on the Padang this year. Associate director, Marketing Communications, Swissotel the Stamford, Koo Sok Hoon said, “This year, we actually have more rooms to offer, as the Parade is at the Padang, compared to last year, where the Parade was at the Floating Platform. Besides locals, we also have some expatriates taking up our rooms for the National Day Parade.” Competition like the new Marina Bay Sands, have not driven prices down. Swissotel said prices are slightly higher this year due to its location to the Padang. The hotel’s restaurant on the 69th floor is also fully booked. Diners who wish to have a window seat are charged an additional $20 per table. At another restaurant nearer ground level, diners can catch the fireworks, listen to the 21-gun salute and watch the mobile columns, while sipping on the Singapore Sling cocktail which costs just $4.50 in celebration of 45 birthday of nation. The offer comes with every set dinner. At the new Fullerton Bay Hotel, you may not get a direct view of the Padang but its rooftop restaurant gives a good view of the fireworks. Giovanni Viterale, GM of The Fullerton Hotel and The Fullerton Bay Hotel said, “We have fantastic cocktails, packages with nice snacks up there. And so far, our venues are almost taken up.” First time NDP 2010 will be recorded in 3D. But, it will not be telecasted in 3D. As a national event will be telecasted live from 5.30pm to 8.30pm (SST) across MediaCorp channels including Channel 5, HD5, Channel 8, Channel U, Suria, Vasantham, okto and Channel NewsAsia International
*This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News, contact:

DTN News: U.S. Department of Defense Contracts Dated August 11, 2010

DTN News: U.S. Department of Defense Contracts Dated August 11, 2010 Source: U.S. DoD issued August 11, 2010 - No. 713-10 (NSI News Source Info) WASHINGTON - August 11, 2010: U.S. Department of Defense, Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs) Contracts issued August 11, 2010 are undermentioned;



US Foodservice/Joseph Webb Division, Vista, Calif., is being awarded a maximum $51,877,500 firm-fixed-price, prime vendor contract for full line food distribution. There are no other locations of performance. Using services are Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps. and Coast Guard. The original proposal was Web-solicited with three responses. The date of performance completion is Aug. 17, 2011. The Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity (SPM300-08-D-3206).


BAE Systems, Louisville, Ky., is being awarded a $36,759,949 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract providing engineering services and supplies to overhaul, repair and upgrade four MK 45 gun mounts. This procurement provides all necessary materials and services to receive, inventory, disassemble, repair, overhaul, manufacture, convert, upgrade, test, package and ship the gun mounts. Work will be performed in Louisville, Ky. (80 percent), and Minneapolis, Minn. (20 percent), and is expected to be completed by January 2013. Contract funds in the amount of $11,295,763 will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured. The Port Hueneme Division, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Port Hueneme, Calif., is the contracting activity (N00024-07-G-5438).

Raytheon Co., Integrated Defense Systems, Tewksbury, Mass., is being awarded a $36,095,131 modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-05-C-5346) to procure mission systems equipment (MSE) for the Self Defense Test Ship in support of the Anti-Air Warfare Self Defense Enterprise Test and Evaluation Master Plan. The MSE procured will support the DDG 1000 and CVN 78 classes of ships, in addition to follow-on operation test and evaluation efforts for the Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile and Surface Electronic Warfare Improvement Program. Work will be performed in Andover, Mass. (58.7 percent); Portsmouth, R.I. (32 percent); Sudbury, Mass. (5.4 percent); Tewksbury, Mass. (2.7 percent); and San Diego, Calif. (1.2 percent). Work is expected to be completed by March 2013. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity.

Hensel-Phelps Soltek, JV, Greeley, Colo., is being awarded a $7,984,629 modification under a previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (N62473-09-C-1601) for furniture, fixtures and equipment/collateral equipment for four 200-room bachelor enlisted quarters at Marine Corps Base and Marine Corps Air Station, Camp Pendleton. The total contract amount after exercise of this modification will be $125,801,163. Work will be performed in Oceanside, Calif., and is expected to be completed by October 2011. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest, San Diego, Calif., is the contracting activity.

Raytheon Co., Integrated Defense Systems, Tewksbury, Mass., is being awarded a $5,997,935 modification to previously awarded contract (N00024-05-C-5346) for changes to the delivery requirements of Mission Systems Equipment (MSE) for the DDG 1000 class. These changes include additional storage space, services and shipping fixtures that are required to support the revised DDG 1000 program ship production schedules and in-yard-need-dates at the production shipyards. Work will be performed in Portsmouth, R.I. (88 percent); Tewksbury, Mass. (11 percent); Cordova, Ala. (0.5 percent); and North Kingstown, R.I. (0.5 percent). Work is expected to be completed by December 2013. Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity.


Lockheed Martin Corp., Eagan, Minn., was awarded a $7,978,075 contract which will design and develop highly integrated photonic devices for transition into current emerging tactical platforms for the Air Force and will develop key technology to overcome several of the existing constraints with respect to the integration and packaging aspects of the current generation of photonic devised by defining the technology path to a realizable system using an optimum combination of optical devices in a chip. At this time, $2,000,000 has been obligated. AFRL/RIKD, Rome, N.Y., is the contracting activity (FA8750-10-C-0133).

Hydraulics International, Inc., Chatsworth, Calif., was awarded a $5,904,318 contract for a quantity of 77 MJ-1C, an aerial stores lift truck/bomb lift and transports used to transport lift and attach bombs, fuel tanks, pylons and aerial stores to wings to fuselage stations of military aircraft. At this time, the entire amount has been obligated. WE-ALC/GRVKAC, Robins Air Force Base, Ga., is the contracting activity (FA8533-08-D-0011-0003) .

University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, Ohio, was awarded a $24,000,000 contract modification which will provide research and analysis for the United States Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine’s critical care air transport team and expeditionary medicine missions. At this time, $1,978,172 has been obligated. AFRL/PKHB, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8650-10-2-6140; Agreement Order 6B01).

DTN News: General Tactical Vehicles Competing For Australia's JLTV

DTN News: General Tactical Vehicles Competing For Australia's JLTV
Source: DTN News - - This article compiled by Roger Smith from reliable sources including U.S. DoD issued August 10, 2010
(NSI News Source Info) WASHINGTON - August 11, 2010: General Tactical Vehicles, Sterling Heights, Mich., was awarded on Aug. 5 a $8,985,020 cost-share contract.
This effort is for the design and development of three joint tactical vehicles (JLTV) subconfigurations for Australia in the right hand drive and the delivery of two JLTV subconfiguration vehicles and one companion trailer for government testing.
Work is to be performed in Livonia, Mich. (47 percent); Sterling Heights, Mich. (41 percent); Muskegon, Mich. (9 percent); and South Bend, Ind. (3 percent), with an estimated completion date of May 19, 2011. Bids were solicited on the World Wide Web with seven bids received. TACOM Contracting Center, Warren, Mich., is the contracting activity (W56HZV-09-C-0108).
The joint light tactical vehicle (JLTV) is a new support vehicle programme being developed by the US forces, specifically the US Army, USSOCOM, and the Marine Corps to replace the rapidly ageing and outmoded high-mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicle (HMMWV), the design of which is over 25 years old. The new JLTV vehicle range is expected to confer more survivability from insurgent attacks such as road-side bombings and will also have a greater payload. The HMMWV was not designed from the outset to be an armoured combat and patrol vehicle but nevertheless has been employed as one. In contrast the JLTV has been specifically designed for patrol and combat operations. The JLTV project has been able to benefit from some of the knowledge gained during the future tactical truck system (FTTS) project.
The JLTV range will contain five armoured versions including infantry combat vehicles, command vehicles, reconnaissance vehicles, and armoured utility vehicles. There will probably also be an armoured personnel carrier and a number of other non-armoured versions for other purposes such as ambulances, utility vehicles and general purpose mobility.
There are several companies involved in the development of the JLTV project with several joint efforts having been established including Northrop Grumman and Oshkosh Corp, General Tactical Vehicle, a joint venture between AM General and General Dynamics Land Systems, Lockheed Martin and BAE (formerly Armor Holdings), BAE Systems and International Military and Government LLC, an affiliate of Navistar International Corporation (International Military and Government LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of International Truck and Engine Corporation), Boeing, Textron, SAIC, DRS Sustainment Systems Inc and Force Protection Inc. The three contract awards for development of JLTV prototypes will be in October 2008 with a JLTV system development demonstration phase planned to begin in 2012. After this two contractors will complete the design and development of the JLTV FoV (family of vehicles) and companion trailers and then compete to produce the multiple JLTV variants. The MRAP-mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicle development has been given priority but all authorities agree that this will not replace the JLTV as it does not have the payload or versatility of the JLTV.

DTN News: Northrop Grumman Awarded Contract For Laser Transmitter On Super Stallion

DTN News: Northrop Grumman Awarded Contract For Laser Transmitter On Super Stallion
Source: U.S. DoD issued August 10, 2010
(NSI News Source Info) WASHINGTON - August 11, 2010: Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., Rolling Meadows, Ill., is being awarded an undefinitized contract action with an estimated value of $77,655,380 for the procurement of 121 AN/AAQ-24(V) 25 Guardian laser transmitter assemblies for installation on CH-53D, CH-53E, and CH-46E helicopters, including associated technical data.
The guardian laser transmitter assembly, a component of the large aircraft infrared countermeasures, is a next-generation directable laser-based countermeasures system for protecting helicopters and some fixed-wing aircraft from man-portable air defense systems. Work will be performed in Rolling Meadows, Ill. (39 percent); Edinburgh, Scotland (16.8 percent); Goleta, Calif. (10 percent); Blacksburg, Va. (9.4 percent); Boulder, Colo. (7.1 percent); Dallas, Texas (5.5 percent); Lewisburg, Tenn. (2 percent); Apopka, Fla. (1.8 percent); Woodland Hills, Calif. (1.3 percent); Tampa, Fla. (1 percent); Santa Clara, Calif. (1 percent); Melbourne, Fla. (1 percent); Wheeling, W.V. (1 percent); and various locations throughout the U.S. (3.1 percent), and is expected to be completed in August 2012.
Contract funds will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured.
The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River Md., is the contracting activity (N00019-10-C-0080).
The Sikorsky CH-53 Super Stallion heavy-lift helicopter first flew in 1974 and entered service with the US Marine Corps (USMC) in 1981. A total of 172 Super Stallions have been delivered and 165 are in service with marine corps squadrons in the Pacific Fleet and in the Atlantic Fleet. The helicopter is also in service with the marine corps reserve, training and experimental squadrons. The final Super Stallion for the USMC was delivered in November 2003. The marine corps uses the Super Stallion in the amphibious assault role and for transporting heavy equipment. The US Navy also use the Super Stallion for vertical delivery and recovery of damaged aircraft on aircraft carriers.
In 2000, the USMC announced the CH-53X programme to upgrade the CH-53E and extend its service life to 2025. Upgrades would include a new engine, substantially increased payload capacity, all-composite rotor, elastomeric rotor head and glass cockpit with fly-by-wire controls. In March 2004, a USMC analysis of alternatives (AoA) determined that a new-build airframe would be a more cost-effective solution. Sikorsky was awarded an initial system development and demonstration (SDD) contract for the new helicopter, which is designated CH-53K heavy-lift rotorcraft (HLR), in January 2006 and the full SDD contract in April 2006. The GE38-1B engine was selected to power the CH-53K in December 2006. Requirement is for 156 helicopters and service entry is planned for 2015.

DTN News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated August 11, 2010

DTN News: Aerospace/Defense Headlines - News Dated August 11, 2010
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - August 11, 2010: Comprehensive daily news related on Aerospace/Defense for the world of TODAY.
*Comprehensive daily news related on Aerospace/Defense for the world of TODAY.

Wednesday August 11, 2010

Tuesday August 10, 2010

DTN News: US, Canada And Russia Having Unique Exercise In NORAD to Test Hijack Response

DTN News: US, Canada And Russia Having Unique Exercise In NORAD to Test Hijack Response
Source: DTN News - - This article compiled by Roger Smith from reliable sources
(NSI News Source Info) PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colorado - August 11, 2010: The United States and Russia, which have more bluster than cooperation in their often contentious history, will have their jet fighters take turns pursuing a civilian plane across the Pacific Ocean this week in a first-of-its-kind exercise to test their response to a potential international hijacking. Aircraft and officers from Russia and the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, a joint U.S.-Canadian agency, are to track the civilian plane, an executive-style jet that was playing the role of a hijacked civilian airliner. The goal is to test how well the two forces can hand off responsibility for the "hijacked" plane. The three-day exercise started Sunday in Alaska. Also participating in Operation Vigilant Eagle were both countries' civil air traffic control agencies. Officials on both sides of the trust-building military exercise chose a mutual, modern-day interest — the fight against terror — to create an incident that could entangle the two countries. "We try to anticipate any potential areas in which it might be necessary for us to launch fighter jets," said Major Michael Humphreys, a NORAD spokesman. A terrorist hijacking, he said, "is every bit as probable as any other" scenario. Moscow faces terrorist attacks by radicals from the North Caucasus. In March, suicide bombers killed 40 on the Moscow metro, and an explosion in November derailed a Moscow-bound train, killing 26. More recently, on July 29, a man caused a hijacking scare at Moscow's Domodedovo Airport when he seized a plane with 105 passengers and crew for about two hours.
The United States is still wrestling with terrorist threats to airplanes and subways nearly nine years after the Sept. 11, 2001, hijackings. A Nigerian man is accused of trying to blow up a jetliner over Detroit on Dec. 25. Authorities thwarted a purported plot to carry out three suicide bombings on New York subways in September 2009. It is unlikely that Vigilant Eagle was devised to deal with a specific threat, said John Pike, director of, which tracks military and homeland security news. The purpose is more likely a combination of confidence building and rooting out any communication and jurisdictional problems before they crop up in a real emergency, he said. Pike cited the Korean Air Lines flight that the Soviet Union shot down in 1983, killing 269 people. There was an "interface" problem between the Americans and the Soviets because they were looking at different information, Pike said. "I could easily imagine [NORAD] looked at this and said, 'We don't know if we have the phone number of Russian air defense.' This is not something you'd want to improvise on the fly." Progress has come in fits and starts since the Soviet Union collapsed, leaving Russia without the Soviet satellite nations. But the two countries have performed many joint exercises, including search-and-rescue scenarios, and have participated in multinational peacekeeping missions in places like Bosnia. This is the first U.S.-Russian exercise involving NORAD, a U.S.-Canadian command that patrols the skies over North America, Humphreys said. NORAD's headquarters are at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado. Vigilant Eagle calls for NORAD F-22s flown by U.S. pilots to follow the "hijacked" plane west across the Pacific until it gets closer to Russian airspace, where Russian MiG-31s take over. On the return trip east, the process will be reversed. Airborne warning and surveillance aircraft from each country will also take part. Officers from Russia, Canada and the United States were aboard the target plane to observe, along with an interpreter. For a short time during the handoff, fighter jets from both sides were to be alongside the target plane. The exercise comes at a time of improving relations between Washington and Moscow, after a low point in August 2008 when Russia sent troops into Georgia to side with a secessionist movement, drawing U.S. criticism. Also complicating the relationship was the U.S. plan to put part of a missile defense system in Central Europe. That drew objections from Moscow because of the proximity to Russia's western border. Vigilant Eagle, originally planned for August 2008, was postponed indefinitely as relations soured. In early 2009, the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama began pursuing a "reset" with Russia, and relations began to improve. Both sides may have something to gain from military-to-military cooperation beyond the practical knowledge that comes from a joint exercise. The United States benefits from having better integration and cooperation with the Russian military elite, a group often seen as anti-Western, said Andrew Kuchins, a fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. "The more we can do of that, the better the mutual understanding will be," he said. Russia, which is overhauling its military structure, will benefit from the chance to see how the all-volunteer U.S. force works, with its strong corps of noncommissioned officers, said Alexander Golts, an independent military analyst in Moscow. "The Defense Ministry quite a while ago rejected the idea of mass mobilization and woke up to the idea" of a professional army, Golts said. The need for a permanent, professional force capable of rapid deployment became obvious in the 2008 war in Georgia, he said. Russia "welcomes any experience the country can gather to strengthen the ability" of a noncommissioned officer corps, he said.

DTN News: Russia TODAY August 11, 2010 - Burning Russia Battles To Defend Nuclear Sites

DTN News: Russia TODAY August 11, 2010 - Burning Russia Battles To Defend Nuclear Sites
Source: DTN News - - This article compiled by Roger Smith from reliable sources including AFP
(NSI News Source Info) MOSCOW, Russia - August 11, 2010: Russia fought a deadly battle Tuesday to prevent wildfires from engulfing key nuclear sites as Prime Minister Vladimir Putin took to the air in a water-bombing plane to join the firefighting effort.
Two soldiers were killed by blazing trees as they strove to put out a fire dangerously close to Russia's main nuclear research centre, while workers were also mobilised to fight blazes near a nuclear reprocessing plant.
After almost two weeks of fires that have claimed over 50 lives and part destroyed a military storage site, the authorities said they were making progress in fighting fires that still covered 174,035 hectares of land. Putin visited the Ryazan region south of Moscow, one of the worst hit, and jumped into a Be-200 jet to scoop up water from local lakes and then dump it on the fires, state media said. State television showed the Russian strongman, headphones clamped against his ears, confidently taking the co-pilot's controls as the plane zoomed over the water. "We hit it!" exclaimed Putin as his colleagues confirmed the water had struck the target. The emergencies ministry said that over the past 24 hours, 247 new fires had appeared, more than the 239 had been put out, and 557 fires were still raging across the affected region. The authorities have come under pressure to explain the magnitude of effects of the heatwave, which meteorologists have said is the worst in the 1,000-year history of Russia. The head of forestry for the Moscow region, Sergei Gordeichenko, was sacked after President Dmitry Medvedev noted he had stayed on holiday as the fires burned, a spokesman told AFP. "He was awaited but he never came... Why do we need such forest specialists? Let them take their holidays on the Canary Islands," Medvedev said Tuesday. Two members of the Russian armed forces were killed Monday fighting wildfires around Russia's main nuclear research centre in Sarov, a town in the Nizhny Novgorod region still closed to foreigners as in Soviet times. Rifle battalion member Vasily Tezetev, 22, "died the death of a hero" while dealing with the fire burning in a nature reserve close to the town, the local emergency centre said Tuesday, Interfax reported. Vasily Veshkin, 27, who usually worked at a local prison camp, died fighting the fire on the same day, it added. Both were killed when they were hit by burning parts of trees that fell to the ground. Officials said meanwhile that fires burning within 15 kilometres (10 miles) of Snezhinsk in the Urals, home to another of Russia's top nuclear research centres, had been reduced to a five-hectare area and there was no risk for the town. The acrid smog from wildfires 100 kilometres (60 miles) out in the countryside that descended over Moscow eased Tuesday but forecasters said the air quality was still dangerously poor. The Moscow authorities acknowledged for the first time on Monday that the daily mortality rate in Moscow had doubled and morgues were overflowing with bodies but the federal government has yet to confirm those figures. Carbon monoxide in the Moscow air was 1.4 times higher than acceptable levels Tuesday, the state pollution watchdog said, a slight improvement from the day before. On Saturday they had been an alarming 6.6 times worse. Sweden Tuesday advised its citizens against travelling to Moscow and regions ravaged by wildfires, in part because of the possible health consequences. On Saturday Denmark also warned against travelling to the Russian capital unless strictly necessary. Britain and Italy have issued lighter warnings against travelling to the region with children and for anyone who is pregnant, elderly or has health problems. The heatwave has had a huge impact on all areas of Russian society and economists warned Tuesday the record temperatures could have cost the country up to 15 billion dollars and undercut a modest economic revival. Worst hit has been agriculture, which has seen 10 million hectares of land destroyed.

AFP News Headlines

Toyota suspends auto exports to Iran

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  • Burning Russia battles to defend nuclear sites

    Burning Russia battles to defend nuclear sites

    AFP - Yesterday, 08:31 pm

    MOSCOW (AFP) - Russia fought a deadly battle Tuesday to prevent wildfires from engulfing key nuclear sites as Prime Minister Vladimir Putin took to the air in a water-bombing plane to join the firefighting effort. More »

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  • Chavez, Santos meet to dispel US-Colombian crisis

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  • Iraq spending 300 million dollars on hotels for summit: FM

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    BAGHDAD (AFP) - Iraq will spend 300 million dollars to upgrade six major hotels in Baghdad for an Arab summit next year, Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari told AFP on Tuesday. More »

  • New Iran envoy says sanctions won't affect Iraq trade

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