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Pentagon chief to unveil mini-drones, anti-IS funds: officials

US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter, pictured on January 28, 2016, plans to unveil some newly declassified technologies, including a small drone that is capable of flying alongside other units in a sort of swarmUS Defense Secretary Ashton Carter will on Tuesday preview the Pentagon’s plans for its 2017 budget, including extra cash to fight the Islamic State group, previously secret mini-drones and a beefed-up US presence in Europe’s east. The base budget for fiscal year 2017 is expected to be $524 billion, augmented by $59 billion for an “overseas contingency fund” to pay for ongoing military actions in Afghanistan and against IS, defense officials told AFP on Monday. In a speech in Washington, Carter will highlight the world’s changing “threat environment,” one official said, including new risks presented by Russia since its 2014 annexation of Crimea and its subsequent support of pro-Russia separatists in eastern Ukraine.

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