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Armed Forces on Migration to Technology-based Ops

LONDON: The armed forces is equipping itself in preparation for a migration from an asset-dependent operation to technology-based operations, in line with the shifting narratives in warfare.

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, who is currently attending the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI 2023) here, said much has been learnt from the war between Russia and Ukraine where technology has the capability of weakening the enemy.

“This is the transition of doctrine of many countries and in Malaysia I have discussed with senior armed forces officers to look at the process of migration,” he said after a tour of one of the largest military exhibitions at Excel London, looking at some of the cutting-edge defence technology equipment and systems.

“We learn and take note from the war between Russia and Ukraine where technology, such as the unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) (for reconnaissance and surveillance or drones were used).

“They don’t need big assets but have the capability to weaken the enemy.”

Malaysia’s participation in DSEI 2023 is to express its continued commitment to bolster defence cooperation with the United Kingdom.

The minister was accompanied by Malaysian High Commissioner to the UK Datuk Zakri Jaafar, ministry deputy secretary-general (development) Datuk Dr Shahrizat Ahmad, Armed Forces chief General Tan Sri Mohammad Abdul Rahman, army chief General Datuk Muhammad Hafizuddeain Jantan and high commission defense attache Brigadier-General Datuk Safwan @ Asri Ismail.

The minister also attended the launch of DSEI 23 by British Chief of General Staff General Sir Patrick Sanders, who in his keynote speech stressed that “new technologies, including UAVs, advanced weaponry, and cyber warfare, have transformed the nature of conflict and revolutionized military operations”.

Mohamad said he was in agreement with Sander’s statement.

“We are still at the transition stage from very much manual operations to technology-based defence doctrine, in the hope that it will decrease operating costs while increase development expenditure,” he said.

At the moment, the drones for surveillance at the borders will be procured in 2026, but small drones have already been used for surveillance at borders with Kalimantan and Thailand.

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