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Nigeria receives green light for AH-1Z attack helicopter deal

19th April 2022 - 14:45 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Nigeria has signed on to buy AH-1Z Viper attack helicopters manufactured by Bell. (Photo: USMC)

Nigeria has been approved by the US to buy AH-1Z Viper attack helicopters.

The US State Department has approved an estimated $997 million order from Nigeria for Bell AH-1Z attack helicopters. 

The West African country intends on buying 12 of the aircraft and a variety of related equipment and weapons including 28 General Electric T-700 engines and 2000 Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) guidance kits. 

Other items listed by the US State Department in a 14 April notice include Night Vision Cueing Display (NVCD) systems; communication equipment; electronic warfare systems; AN/AVS-9 Aviator’s Night Vision Imaging Systems; M197 20mm machine guns and Target Sight Systems (TSS). 

'This proposed sale will support the foreign policy goals and national security objectives of the United States by improving the security of a strategic partner in Sub-Saharan Africa,' noted the US State Department.

'The proposed sale will better equip Nigeria to contribute to shared security objectives, promote regional stability and build interoperability with the U.S. and other Western partners. This sale will be a major contribution to U.S. and Nigerian security goals. Nigeria will have no difficulty absorbing the equipment and services into its armed forces.' 

Production of the AH-1Z for the Czech Republic started in February 2022 as part of a H-1 mixed fleet order, with the manufacturer having previously secured export orders from Bahrain and Pakistan. 

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