On Monday the North Atlantic Council announced that it will begin operating airborne early-warning flights in response to the situation in Ukraine, where pro-Russian forces are largely in control of Crimea. NATO will fly Boeing E-3 Awacs airborne early-warning aircraft in the airspace of member states Poland and Romania, which both border Ukraine. The flights are intended to “enhance the alliance’s situational awareness” of events in Ukraine.
Rafael’s exhibit here at the Singapore Airshow (Booth N51) reflects the outcome of the Israeli defense group’s recently completed reorganization that, according to chairman Brig. General (Retd.) Itzchak Gat, will better enable it to meet its goals for further developing its product portfolio.
A U.S. Congressional panel has agreed to the Pentagon’s plan to quickly deliver six Boeing AH-64 Apache attack helicopters to Iraq. They will be delivered in the summer, and will be leased from the U.S. Army to allow training to begin with Iraqi army aviation. The helicopters are AH-64Ds upgraded to a partial AH-64E configuration. The notification to Congress was lodged on January 23, and was followed by another four days later covering the $4.8 billion purchase of 24 new-build AH-64E Apache Guardians to be delivered over a three-year period.
AJW Group has appointed Michael Duncan as its regional director for Africa. Duncan will be responsible for developing the company’s presence and establishing partnerships with operators who need integrated aircraft support services. Previously Duncan was responsible for aviation projects in the Sudan, Comoros, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, South Africa and Saudi Arabia.
The U.S. government said this week that it will expedite foreign military sales (FMS) to Iraq, including deliveries of small UAVs and Hellfire missiles, to help stem spiraling violence in Anbar Province. The weaponry is part of a “holistic” strategy the U.S. and Iraqi governments are pursuing to dislodge al-Qaeda-affiliated groups, officials said.
Stratford, Conn.-based Volo Aviation has been awarded the contract to manage the FBO at MidCoast Regional Airport at Wright Army Airfield in Hinesville, Ga. The dual-use public/military airport 35 miles southwest of Savannah features a pair of 5,000-foot runways. In 2007 the local authorities partnered to construct a new 13,825-sq-ft terminal to house the airport’s military and civil operations. The aviation services provider operates four other bases in Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New York and Florida.
Beechcraft appointed South Africa-based Absolute Aviation an authorized parts distributor for sub-Saharan Africa. Absolute Aviation, which has acted as Beechcraft’s exclusive aircraft distributor for sub-Saharan Africa since 2011, will have $1 million of inventory in stock at Lanseria Airport in Johannesburg, South Africa, to support the Beechcraft product line as well as the Hawker 125 series.
Bombardier has landed a new customer for its Q400 turboprop in Africa, inking a conditional order with Air Côte d’Ivoire for a pair of the 74-seat turboprops here at the Dubai Airshow yesterday. The national carrier of the Ivory Coast, established in January, has also signed for two options, convertible until November next year. Bombardier values the potential firm order at $69 million based on list prices.
The U.S. is “gently prompting” the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries to integrate their air- and missile-defense systems, according to American strategic defense consultant Ian Brzezinski.
Last week Iraq took delivery of the first batch of Mil helicopters from the Rostvertol factory. Four Mi-35Ms were delivered to Iraq, their arrival being announced by Iraqi prime minister Nouri Al-Maliki. Iraqi managers, crews and technicians have been training at the Russian army’s Torzhok center, with the first group completing its course in late September. Following the delivery of the initial batch will be at least two more Mi-35Ms, and a sizeable batch of Mil Mi-28NE Night Hunter attack helicopters.
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