Nigeria to receive new attack helicopters
The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) expects delivery of 54 new air assets, including attack aircraft, helicopters and UAS, to boost its capability to fight insecurity in the country, Chief of Air Staff Marshal Amao said on 9 December.
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari is said to have approved the delivery of 24 Leonardo-produced M-346 fighter trainer and attack aircraft, six T-129 Atak helicopters, two Augusta 109 Trekker multi-role helicopters and three Chinese-made Wing Loong II UAS.
The M-346 was initially designed as an advanced/lead-in fighter trainer but can also be used as a light attack aircraft.
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The T129 Atak is a two-seat, twin-engine helicopter designed for attack and reconnaissance missions.
Designed by Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group, a subsidiary of the Aviation Industry Corporation of China, the Wing Loong II is the second variant of the Wing Loong (Pterodactyl) family.
Depending on the customer’s mission requirements, Wing Long II can host a range of ISR and strike payloads.
Other platforms Nigeria will receive include two Casa-295 medium airlift aircraft, two Beechcraft King Air 360 and four Diamond DA-62 surveillance aircraft.
Amao did not say how much Nigeria would pay for the assets or where they would be procured from.
He said a few of the platforms are expected to be delivered to the NAF before the end of Q1 2023.
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