The events and updates listed below are listed in chronological order, as they occurred and were reported by members of various international news agencies on location in Dignania. This site, maintained by the Royal News Service of Eastern Zartania, provides a comprehensive look into the on-going struggle in Dignania. Where possible, pictures and full articles are provided.

June News Reports

June 5, 299 AP

RNS update on the war in Dignania – (12:00 PM Local Time)

    The fighting continues in the east with no sign of letting up.  Newly arrived KTZ Soldiers have moved toward the front, but information on where or when they will move into the line is unavailable.  In a new twist on the ongoing media blackout, MLFLD army officials yesterday forced reporters and other civilian observers out of the forward areas in the Central and Western Sectors.  No clear reason has been given except that due to on-going operations the safety of the men dictates that no outside sources must intentionally or not release information that could harm any operation.  Reporters and news organizations around the world have filed complaints, but to no avail.  The lock out continues.  Even the complaints of the government of Aros on freedom of the press have come upon the deaf ears of the MLFLD and KTZ.  From today on there is a complete information black out along the front lines and important military areas behind the lines.  Many people are asking who is responsible and why and to what purpose is this black out serve?  So far no one knows.

June 9, 299 AP

Sam Young reporting from the Dock yards in the Northern Dignanian City of Mermosillo(10:20 AM Local Time)

    [The camera frames Sam Young standing in front of a long prier.  Large cargo and transport ships flank each side of the prier.  Dozens of men move about their duties as large cranes unload military equipment off the ships.  It is hard for the audience not to notice the two KTZ military police officers just off to the left and behind Young.  They appear to be intently watching her.  Sam begins to speak.]

    “I’m standing her at the Hyperion dock yards here in the city of Mermosillo.  The docks are alive with unloading men and material for the war against the UBD.  This is the nerve center for all incoming shipping from Eastern Zartania and other countries sending military and humanitarian aid to Dignania.  Security is very tight here with a large contingent of KTZ and MLFLD security troops patrolling the docks.  Several anti-aircraft positions can be seen guarding the docks.  A MLFLD marked armor car sits just off to the right of the gates leading into the docks.  From my vantage point here on the docks I can see several KTZ warships patrolling the mouth of the harbor.”

    “The Hyperion docks are the most important shipping point in Northern Dignania.  Almost all men and material earmarked for the MLFLD come through these docks.  The natural harbor and calm waters provide a safe and easy access to the ocean.  These docks were what the UBD were after when they drove into Northern Dignania back in late March.  Once the UBD hit the refused line the MLFLD put up after the UBD broke out of the mountains they decided to take the docks in Mermosillo.  If the UBD had taken the docks they would have controlled the best access point into Northern Dignania.  Besides the docks here in Mermosillo, there is no where else where large shipments of men and material and be brought into Northern Dignania.  The harbor near Kasama is small and does not have the facilities to handle the material needed to fight a war.  The MLFLD was saved when the UBD were pushed back into the mountains.”

[Sam pauses as she thinks of what she will say next.]

    “Many people might be wondering why I have decided to do a report on the docks when there are more important stories in the front lines such as the UBD offense in eastern Rokariyn Mountains.  Well, frankly the Hyperion docks are the only story the officials in MLFLD will allow me to do.”

[The guard’s posture becomes more hostile as Sam continues to speak.]

    “Several days ago I was kicked out of the Central Sector when I started asking questions about the strange appearance of Duke of Avion’s personal guards running around talking to commanders in the trenches.  I went to ask Colonel Khan about…

[Sam is cut off in mid sentence as the guards come rushing forward.  One of the guards starts waving his hands in front the camera ordering it to be turned off.  Moments later the TV screen goes blank.]

June 14, 299 AP

RNS update concerning the Imperial Zartanian Navy and the attacks against KTZ merchant ships -
(3:30 PM Local Time)

    "This is Andrew Michaels, Zartanian naval attaché to RNS, reporting to you from the Admiralty Building in Claw Anchorage."

    "Over the past month, 15 more Eastern Zartanian-flagged merchant ships have been lost at sea due to enemy action. It has been determined through intelligence operations conducted at the scenes of the attacks, as well as through distress calls that have been pieced together, that these attacks are being carried out by 5, possibly 6, armed merchant raiders. These raiders, both UBD and MCZ, are specially designed to wreck havoc with enemy merchant shipping, and are doing their job well to this point, much to the detriment of our own war effort in Dignania.  The raiders seem to be converted fast merchant ships that now carry gun in excess of 10-inches caliber. Their typical method of operation seems to be to fly the merchant ensign of a neutral state in order to close their victims. At a range of only 500 yards, the raider will run up its true colors, expose its guns, and blast its victim at point blank range."

    "The Kingdom of Eastern Zartania cannot allow this preying on our merchant ships to continue. To this point, only ships flying the Eastern Zartanian merchant ensign have been attacked, and it is out belief that that will remain the case as long as no other powers get involved in the Dignanian Civil War. In order to counter this threat to Eastern Zartanian shipping, Captain John Sheridan, the hero of Ahmaden Bay, has been ordered to proceed to sea with a small destroyer force to hunt down and destroy the enemy raiders. Given the temporary rank of commodore, Sheridan is flying his broad pennant from the destroyer HMIS Fireball (D-9), and has in his squadron the destroyers HMIS Yuvan (D-12) and HMIS Drokmir (D-14), and the frigate HMIS Arctic Wolf (F-4)."

    "It is unclear at the point exactly how Commodore Sheridan intends to proceed in eliminating this threat to the Royal Army's supply lines, but the Crown and the Admiralty seem to have placed their faith in his abilities, and much information still remains classified. We'll bring you more on this continuing story, as it becomes available. This is Andrew Michaels, reporting for RNS."

June 17, 299AP

KTZ Issues Letters of Marquee - (10:30 AM Local Time)

[News release issued by the Imperial Zartanian Admiralty and approved by the Ministry of Public Information & Customs]

    “Today, in a historic act, His Royal Majesty issued the first letter of marquee in over 150 years. Due to the limited size and ranging abilities of the Imperial Navy, the current blockade against UBD-held Dignania has been only moderately successful. Royal intelligence indicates that moderate amounts of supplies are still getting into southern Dignania to supply the communist UBD and MCZ forces struggling for domination of the country against the Eastern Zartanian and MLFLD troops in the north. It has also been brought to the Royal Council's attention that UBD- and MCZ-flagged merchant vessels are operating at sea throughout the world, and are actually carrying goods between foreign ports as a way to draw revenue for the communist armies. The Imperial Navy, though a powerful force in its own right, does not have the ability to stop all of these rebel merchant ships from carrying on their illegal trade. Therefore, in order to supplement the reach of the Crown, HRM has begun issuing letters of marquee.”

    “Letters of marquee will be issued only to those upstanding Eastern Zartanian citizens who can prove that they have the assets, the vessels, and the crew to operate as an agent of the Crown against the Kingdom's enemies. Letters of marquee will allow the bearer to act as a privateer, taking or destroying ships under the enemy's flag in the name of the King. Privateers will be considered duly commissioned officers and sailors of the Kingdom of Eastern Zartania, and will fly a special ensign (attached). In order for a privateer to legally operate, a letter of marquee must be obtained for each of the Kingdom's enemies against which the ship intends to function. For example, if a privateer has only a letter of marquee against the MCZ, it may not attack ships under the UBD flag. A letter of marquee must be obtained for each. With HRM's proclamation today, letters of marquee are now being issued for ships sailing under MCZ and UBD colors.”

    “The first letters of marquee issued were to Lord Cecil Mikdurhan, one each for the MCZ and UBD. Lord Mikdurhan is planning to outfit three small, fast vessels as privateers. The first of these privateers is HMIP (His Majesty's Imperial Privateer) Deadly Wind, under the command of Captain Jessica di Rohl (IZN, ret.). Captain di Rohl left North Point this afternoon to begin cruising against the enemy. It is expected that HRM will issue no more than 20 letters of marquee over the next two months. More information will be released as it comes in.”

[End of news release]

June 21 299AP

RNS Update on the War in Dignania - (12:00 PM Local Time)

[Broadcast by RNS, cleared by the Ministry of Public Information & Customs]

    “This is George Westor, reporting for RNS. I'm here in northern Dignania right now at the headquarters of the 2nd Regiment Royal Army Police.  For a little over a month now, the soldiers of the 2nd and other army police regiments have been streaming into Dignania, primarily at the request of the Moderate-Loyalist Front for the Liberation of Dignania (MLFLD).”

    “In an agreement reached last month between the MLFLD army command and the Royal Zartanian Army, Eastern Zartanian army police regiments have taken over responsibility for the security of military supply lines, military base security, and the establishment and running of prisoner of war camps. The Eastern Zartanian troops have been cooperating with local Dignanian security and police forces as well, acting as supervisors and trainers.”

    “So far, most of the over 27,000 enemy prisoners that have been taken have been sent to the rudimentary camp established on Rurapentha Island, a small spit of land just a few miles off the coast. When the Eastern Zartanian regulars took over administration of the camp, the walls were practically falling apart and there was no real sense of overall discipline at the base, with some prisoners being severely punished while others were allowed to walk the island freely.”

    “After assuming control of the camp, a strict but fair discipline system was instituted, and Sub-Colonel Jonathan Naidanac made it clear to the prisoners that they would be treated fairly as long as they obeyed the regulations. The POWs were then put to work repairing the walls and, as Sub-Colonel Naidanac put it, "prettying up the camp."

    “Anyone visiting the camp today will find it to be a well-maintained, efficient, and fully operational facility. Guard towers are placed every 150 feet, mounted with powerful searchlights and .30-caliber machine guns. Chain-link fences topped with razor wire surround the camp, as well as a minefield outside the camp. There are only three routes through the minefield into or out of the camp, and these are heavily observed by Eastern Zartanian troops. Eastern Zartanian guards walk the walls and the grounds constantly in-groups of two or three to ensure that they're not jumped by escaping prisoners. The prison's barracks are thoroughly searched on a random basis to ensure against escape attempts as well.”

    “The prisoners, on the whole, seem to have accepted their fate for now. They are fairly well fed, as much as the almost-continual supply convoys can provide, anyway. And they're clothed as well. When the uniforms that they were captured in wear out, the prisoners are issued Eastern Zartanian POW uniforms: bright orange jumpsuits with the large white reflective letters "POW" on the back.”

    “Other Eastern Zartanian army police units have been flying in on Air Force C-7 cargo planes from Haddock Cove on a fairly regular basis. Once "in country," the soldiers have been providing security along supply routes leading to the MLFLD and Eastern Zartanian frontline trenches. These same soldiers have also been providing security to major headquarters and bases throughout northern Dignania, as well as helping to train Dignanian forces in the area. Unfortunately, because of the rather acute shortage of able-bodied men in MLFLD-held Dignania due to the trench warfare, most of the trainees are older men or those who have been injured badly enough to be released from frontline duty, thus making the job of the Eastern Zartanians even harder.“

    “We've been rather cut off from all of the other Eastern Zartanian units here at 2nd Regiment headquarters. What information that does come in is immediately whisked away to the Sub-Colonel or the group commander. The only thing I can tell you for sure is that one week ago a company of soldiers from the 2nd Regiment Royal Army Police were dispatched northward. Since then, I've had it confirmed that they're now acting as the personal guard for MLFLD General Matthew Cook, and as the MLFLD headquarters guards! A surprisingly large compliment for our Eastern Zartanian soldiers!”

    “The only casualty figures I can give you right now are for the 2nd Regiment. In over a month here "in country," we've only two people killed and six wounded. These casualties were incurred during the massive UBD air raids four weeks ago. The eight people affected were guarding a supply depot in northeastern Dignania when it was hit by a flight of UBD Echo fighters. Unfortunately, no names can be released yet, but those are the only casualties that have been taken at this point.”

    “The atmosphere is still really tense here in Dignania, but you'd expect that with such a devastating civil war raging. Supplies have run low a couple times, but nothing serious at this point. The Royal Army's supply corps has been working miracles keeping everyone supplied with whatever is needed, and we all owe them a great deal of thanks. Right now, we're doing pretty well. The fighting hasn't reached back to us yet, but we can always hear the big guns just over the horizon. All of the officers and soldiers of the 2nd Regiment Royal Army Police asked me to send their greetings and their love to everyone at home, and to say that we're hoping to end this war soon!”

    “That's all for now. Once again, this is George Westor, RNS, reporting live from the headquarters of the 2nd Regiment Royal Army Police, somewhere in northern Dignania.”

June 29, 299 AP

RNS Headline News update/Dignania(5:30 PM Local Time)

KHELVOR:  “Good evening, everyone.  I'm Christopher Khelvor, RNS war correspondent, bringing you the latest news on the Dignanian Civil War.”

    “The Royal Army announced today that the UBD offensive against the allied trench lines in northern Dignania has almost stalled.  General Erik vun Orcton, Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Zartanian Army, said that Eastern Zartanian military units have played a very important role in halting the enemy offensive, but that it's not over yet.  He also warned that people here at home should "be expecting some heavy casualty lists.  Trench warfare is not what we're best at, and it's not what we train for.  The Dignanians are better at it, but they needed our help, so we threw in."

    “Royal Army headquarters in Dignania also announced that they have still not received any word from the 34th Regiment Royal Infantry since it was cut off during the first stages of the UBD offensive almost two months ago.  Colonel Sheila Cupptun, commanding officer of the 5th Royal Communications Regiment based at the Eastern Zartanian headquarters, said that "the general feeling is that they're probably dead."  The 34th Regiment has been in Dignania since the early days of the Eastern Zartanian intervention in mid-March, and reported only 600 effectives just prior to entering the trenches against the UBD, having already suffered over 150 dead and the rest wounded.  Royal Army officials say that the exact disposition of the 34th Regiment and its soldiers won't be known until they can push back the UBD and MCZ troops and advance into the former allied trenches.”

    “The Royal Government announced early this afternoon that the issuance of letters of marque has had its first payoff.  Before dawn this morning, the Eastern Zartanian privateer HMIP Kelembra's Blade, under the command of Captain Peter Winfield, captured the enemy freighter Cargo Queen approximately 38 miles WSW Djeriga.  According to Captain Winfield's preliminary report, the freighter had been spotted two days ago in a Djerigan harbor during a reconnaissance patrol carried out by two of the privateer's boats when it was clearly seen to have been flying an MCZ flag.  The enemy vessel left port just after midnight last night, and was immediately seen by Kelembra's Blade, which had been patrolling outside Djerigan waters to avoid the Djerigan gunboats.  After stalking the MCZ freighter for some time to ensure that they were well outside Djerigan territorial waters, Captain Winfield ordered his privateer to run down on the freighter and fired two warning shots at it, at which point the ship showed Neoliliani colors and continued to sail on.  Knowing that the ship had been flying enemy colors inside the port, Kelembra's Blade continued to fire, hulling the enemy ship four times before it heaved to and struck its colors.  A prize crew from the privateer then took possession of the ship, which is currently en route to East Harbor where it will be put before an Admiralty Court to decide if the capture of legal and the ultimate fate of the ship.”

    “Dugas Aerospace, Inc., announced today that it has completed the second production order of 20 more AF-133 "Devastator" ground attack fighters to be delivered to the MLFLD in Dignania.  This marks the halfway point in the 80-aircraft order that was placed by the MLFLD in March.  As with the previous shipment, this batch of Devastators has been painted with the standard MLFLD camouflage scheme and have been given MLFLD roundels and tail flashes.  The 20 fighters will be flown from the Dugas Aerospace factory to Albion, where they will be loaded aboard special freighters for the journey to Chrihan Island off the northeastern coast of Dignania.  Chrihan Island has been temporary taken over by Eastern Zartanian forces, and is used as the primary staging base for aircraft and troops entering the theater.  At Chrihan Island, Dignanian pilots will be trained in the flying and use of the AF-133 by Eastern Zartanian air force members, before being sent to the mainland to join the 20 aircraft already in action forming the MLFLD Air Force.”

    “Task Force 2 is currently operating off Dignania, having taken over from Task Force 1 two weeks ago.  Task Force 2, centered around the jump carrier HMIS Bird-of-Prey (JC-2), is under the command of Upper Admiral Karl Harte, and includes the heavy cruiser HMIS Claw Anchorage (HC-1); the light cruiser HMIS Ghost Raider (LC-2); the destroyers HMIS Waterspout (D-4) and Battleaxe (D-8); and the frigates HMIS Seamist
(F-7), Vengeance (F-14), and Gauntlet (F-25).  Upper Admiral Angelica Cantonev's Task Force 1 was withdrawn to Haddock Cove to effect temporary repairs to some of the ships and to replenish the jump carrier HMIS Warbird's aircraft compliment.  The Admiralty is being tight-lipped currently concerning the timetable to Task Force 1's return to combat operations.  Meanwhile, Task Force 2 has taken over aerial enforcement of the Imperial Navy's blockade, and providing supplemental aerial support to ground troops.”

    “Yesterday afternoon, the Imperial Navy's submarine tender HMIS Betté (NSS-1) came under heavy weapons fire from the island of Nueffi in the Gonorreia archipelago.  HMIS Betté, usually moored near Utiod Island in the southern part of the archipelago, had moved northward in order to allow more room near Chrihan Island for supply and troop convoys to unload.  The submarine tender was in the process of refueling, rearming, and re-provisioning the attack submarine HMIS Marlin (S-8), when heavy machine guns concealed in the nearby forests opened fire.  Two sailors on the submarine tender were injured during the attack.  Both the submarine and the tender, though taken by surprise, quickly returned fire, tearing up the forest growth with a hail of .50-caliber and 20mm shells.  A twelve-person armed detail was put ashore after enemy fire ceased, and recovered three heavy machine guns (.60-caliber), an RPG, two boxes of ammunition, and two bodies.  The bodies have not yet been identified.  Upper Admiral Harte has declared Nueffi Island and the surrounding area to be off limits while the allied high command attempts to decide on a course of action.”

    “Also in Dignania, the Royal Air Force has announced that all of the requisite squadrons are in place to begin what it calls Operation Thunderball.  No details have been released yet as to what exactly the operation is, but sources tell RNS that...”

“Hold on a second.”  [Pause, murmuring off screen]  “We have a late breaking story coming in to the RNS Broadcast Center now.  The Ministry of Public Information & Customs has said that Imperial Zartanian Naval ships off the coast of Dignania have been receiving rumors of the use of chemical weapons in northern Dignania!  Eastern Zartanian ships enforcing the blockade of southern Dignania have been stopping and searching all outgoing neutral ships for contraband.  Apparently a Lexican-flagged merchant ship that had entered the country carrying medical supplies and leaving the port of Mosul, told Imperial Navy officers as it passed through the blockade that they had heard rumors from UBD soldiers that chemical weapons have been deployed in the front lines.  No word on these rumors has been received from either the MLFLD or the Eastern
Zartanian government and it is as yet unclear exactly where, when, why, or if chemical weapons are actually being used in the Dignanian Civil War.  But we'll keep you updated on this breaking story, as more information becomes available.”

    “Keep tuned here for the latest news updates regarding the ongoing war in Dignania.  This is Christopher Khelvor, reporting from the RNS temporary broadcast center in Q'Leist.  Goodnight, folks.”

Click here for RNS news updates for July

Page last updated on Jan 25, 300.
©1999 Matt Cook / Randy Young