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IAI to upgrade Sri Lankan Kfirs
Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) confirmed on 30 June that it is under contract from the Sri Lankan MoD to upgrade Kfir fighter aircraft for the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF).
The $50 million deal includes the installation of advanced avionics ‘in order to one day integrate advanced radar, sensors, communication systems, and new helmets’, IAI announced in a statement.
It added that the upgrade process ‘will also include transfer of knowledge and skills for refurbishment to Sri Lankan Air Force personnel’.
IAI did not disclose how many Kfirs will be upgraded or when the work will be completed, but SLAF commander AM Sudarshana said in early 2021 that five fighters would be overhauled.
According to Shephard Defence Insight, Sri Lanka purchased six Kfir fighters in 1995-1996 and nine more were added by 2005. However, a number were lost during the Sri Lankan civil war (which ended in 2009), leaving just one aircraft in flying condition.
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