30 Jul '12, 7am

Avionics: France committed to Watchkeeper UAV trials - Le Drian

Avionics: France committed to Watchkeeper UAV trials - Le Drian

France remains committed to evaluating the UK's Watchkeeper tactical unmanned air system from later this year, defence minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has confirmed. Prime Minister David Cameron and then-French President Nicolas Sarkozy early this year signed a bilateral defence treaty spanning activities including the joint development and operation of unmanned air vehicles, before the latter lost national elections to François Hollande. This led to some analysts questioning whether the new administration would move forward with elements of the Anglo-French pact. Le Drian and UK defence secretary Philip Hammond confirmed their intention to work together on the Thales-led Watchkeeper programme following a 25 July meeting. "France will undertake operational assessments and trials of the Watchkeeper system in 2012 and 2013, with a view to cooperating with the UK," Thales says. T...

Full article: http://www.electronicsweekly.com/Articles/30/07/2012/5422...

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