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Originally Posted by FN Herstal

12 July 2007 McLEAN, Va. - FN Herstal announced today through FNH USA that the Special Operations Forces (SOF) Combat Assault Rifle (SCAR) and Enhanced Grenade Launcher Module (EGLM) program has received approval from the United States Government (USG) to enter into the Initial Operational Test & Evaluation (IOT&E) phase. Scheduled to commence in July and be complete by mid-December, the IOT&E will consist of select US Military operators testing the weapons in simulated “real-world” mission scenarios. Both quantitative and qualitative data will be collected, with the ultimate and desired outcome having the weapons being designated “Operationally Effective” and “Operationally Suitable” for fielding to US Forces.

This next step comes close on the heels of the SCAR and EGLM successfully passing their Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) acceptance testing conducted February through June of 2007. Going forward, as all timelines fall into place and the weapons test successfully, the SCAR and EGLM can be fielded, on a limited basis, to select US Military Forces by late fall of 2007. Plans to fully field the weapons are now developed and in place, with over $25M (procurement) budgeted in the FY2008 Presidential Budget and over $6M slated for FY2009.

The SCAR system consists of two highly adaptable modular rifle platforms and a grenade launcher. Now US DoD type-designated as the MK 16 MOD 0 5.56mm Special Operations Forces Combat Assault Rifle - Light (SCAR-L) and the MK 17 MOD 0 7.62mm Special Operations Forces Combat Assault Rifle – Heavy (SCAR-H), both SCAR platforms are available with three different barrel lengths optimized for conducting operations in close-quarters combat, standard infantry and longer-range precision fire roles. All SCAR barrels can be easily interchanged by the operator in the field in just minutes to instantly meet the requirements of virtually any mission. The newly designated MK 13 MOD 0 40mm Enhanced Grenade Launcher Module (EGLM) quickly mounts to the underside of either SCAR platform, providing additional punch to the individual warfighter’s firepower and can be easily configured for use as a stand-alone weapon as well.

“We at FN are extremely pleased with the USG’s approval to enter into IOT&E. The SCAR and EGLM program has been a monumental task that has received great input and dedication, not only from the FN team but also from the USG and US Military program representatives. The approval to enter into the IOT&E phase is the next step in the government's testing process and will determine if the systems are operationally suitable and effective. Successful completion of these events will result in the fielding of these weapons to the operational units,” noted Mark Cherpes, Vice President of Military Operations for FNH USA. “We feel that the SCAR is the most flexible, reliable and cost effective weapons system ever offered to America’s fighting men and women, and will give them a potent operational advantage in armed conflicts both present and future.”

The selection of the SCAR in 2004 was the first assault rifle procured by the United States military through a full and open competition since the M4/M16 trials were held in the mid-1960s. Representing the leading edge of current modular assault rifle design, the SCAR development process has covered some 32 months thus far and is the result of a close and ongoing interaction between USSOCOM, SOF operators, combat developers, government program office personnel and the engineers and technicians of FN Herstal. Every possible effort has been made to ensure that the new SCAR weapons system is the most reliable, accurate, rugged, safe and ergonomic assault weapon ever to be carried into combat.

FNH USA is the sales and marketing arm of FN Herstal, S. A., Belgium, whose corporate mission is to remain a global leader in the areas of defense, law enforcement and associated commercial markets, providing the highest quality products and the finest in training and logistical support. For further information on FNH USA and the new SCAR and EGLM, please visit www.fnhusa.com.

FNH USA, LLC., P.O. Box 697, McLean, VA 22101, www.fnhusa.com

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