The Hoplite

Iranian Safir light tactical vehicles in Iraq

Alex Harper Images of Iranian weaponry in Iraq have become more frequent in recent months, as clashes between the Islamic State (IS) and its opposition forces have intensified. These weapons are primarily being employed by Shi’a militias such as Kata’ib Hezbollah and the Badr Army, but have also been spotted in the hands of Kurdish Peshmerga

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Small Arms Survey releases ‘Issue Brief 14: Documenting Small Arms and Light Weapons’

ARES Director N.R. Jenzen-Jones has authored Small Arms Survey Issue Brief 14, a basic guide to documenting small arms and light weapons (SALW). Released last week, Issue Brief 14 gives a step-by-step approach to documenting SALW, as well as an overview of safety procedures and guidelines for undertaking such work in the field. See below for

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Arms Diversion in Iraq – Iranian RU60G thermal weapon sight

Galen Wright Photos made available via Twitter in July show a new addition to Iraq’s bustling black-market – an Iranian RU60G thermal sight, priced at $5,000 USD. Although Iranian arms have been well documented in Iraq, this example highlights a new concern: unauthorised transfers to secondary users. The RU60G is produced in Iran by the privately operated company Rayan

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ARES Research Note 8 – Durability of self-loading rifles

Armament Research Services has released its eighth Research Note, focusing on the durability and longevity of self-loading rifles. Authored by ARES Researcher Ian McCollum, the Note examines some of the core explanations for the durability of such weapons, as well as identifying the components which suffer during regular use and from poor maintenance. In particular,

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RBK-250 ZAB-2.5 cluster munitions used in Libya

N.R. Jenzen-Jones Images recently posted to Twitter and Facebook appear to show the remains of an RBK-250 ZAB-2.5 incendiary cluster munition, apparently documented in Derna, in eastern Libya. ZAB (Zazhygatelnaya Aviatsionnaya Bomba; incendiary aircraft bomb) series weapons include a range of unitary incendiary bombs as well as cargo munitions. The RBK-250 ZAB-2.5 has a nominal weight of

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Hopak-61 rifle presented at Ukrainian arms inspection

Update 150828: A new image of the Hopak-61 rifle has surfaced (below), taken at the Arms & Security 2015 (ЗБРОЯ ТА БЕЗПЕКА – 2015) expo in Kiev and posted less than an hour ago. The rifle is manufactured by Mayak JSC, and is described as a modernised AKM rifle ‘operational-portable’. Michael Smallwood Amongst arms and equipment

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Research Report 4: Less-lethal munitions in Ferguson, Missouri

Armament Research Services is proud to announce the release of the latest publication its Research Report series. Research Report No. 4: Less-Lethal Arms & Munitions Documented in Ferguson, Missouri examines impact and riot control agent (RCA) munitions employed by security forces during the 2014 riots in Ferguson. Authored by chemical weapons specialist Peter White and

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Captured TOW 2A missiles employed in Syria

Michael Smallwood Following news of US-made TOW 2A anti-tank guided weapon (ATGW) missile tubes being captured by Jabhat al-Nusra (or the Nusra front) from Harakat Hazzm last month, new videos uploaded in recent weeks show Jabhat al-Nusra militants employing these systems against armoured vehicles near Idlib city, Syria. With recent heavy fighting in Idlib, these advanced

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Further evidence of 9K135 Kornet ATGWs found in Ukraine

Ivan Kochin with Michael Smallwood Photos uploaded to Ukrainian forums as early as December 2014, and social media sites more recently, show further examples of the comparatively modern Russian 9K135 Kornet  (Корнет; ‘Cornet’) anti-tank guided anti-tank guided weapon (ATGW) ostensibly being employed by pro-Russian separatist forces in the Ukrainian conflict. The remnants of several 9M133 missile

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Report: 3D printing and firearms manufacture

ARES Director N.R. Jenzen-Jones has authored a chapter in a newly released Small Arms Survey paper examining the impact of new technologies in the firearms industry. Mr. Jenzen-Jones’ chapter focuses on the use of additive manufacturing techniques (3D printing) in the firearms industry, the technical merits of the various processes and products, and the associated

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