Niger Armed Forces receive new aircraft, vehicles
Written by defenceWeb, Wednesday, 24 July 2013
Two Cessna Caravans and ten Toyota trucks were handed over to the Nigerien military on July 5 during a ceremony at Nigerien Airbase 101 in the capital Niamey. The ceremony was attended by officials from Niger and the United States, including General Seyni Garba, the Nigerien Joint Chief of Staff, US Ambassador Bisa Williams, Nigerien Minister of Defence Karidio Mahamadou and Brigadier General Issa Mounkaila, Commander of the Nigerien Military Police.
The aircraft and trucks will be used mainly for border security and moving cargo, US Africa Command (Africom) said in a statement.
The single engine Caravans were purchased through the US National Defence Authorization Act Section 1206 programme that is jointly administered by the US Department of Defence and the US State Department. The $11 million package covered the initial costs of the aircraft and related expenses, including maintenance and pilot training, Africom said.
The ten new trucks were obtained under the Trans-Sahara Counter-Terrorism Partnership (TSCTP) program. The small trucks are part of a $4.2 million package that includes larger water and fuel trucks that will be delivered later. The vehicles will be used to enhance border security efforts across Niger, Africom said.
Niger has become a smuggling route for weapons from Libya reaching al Qaeda militants deeper in the Sahara since Muammar Gaddafi's fall in late 2011. Thousands of gunmen and tonnes of weapons and ammunition flowed south, mainly to Mali, after the fall of Libya's former leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.
The US military has run training programmes for Niger's army for years under its counter-terrorism programme in the Sahel and has deployed about 100 military personnel and drones in Niger as part of the operation to dislodge Islamic militants from neighbouring Mali.
Niger is among the West African countries which contributed troops to the regional AFISMA force battling Islamists in Mali alongside a 4 000-strong French contingent.
Niger’s small military comprises some 5 000 personnel. The army has a dozen AML-60 and 88 AML-90 armoured cars and 14 M-3 armoured personnel carriers in service, according to The World Defence Almanac 2012, while the air force flies a single C-130H, Do-28D, Do-228, Boeing 737, two Diamond DA 42 and three ULM Tetra aircraft.
Top stories this week
- Congo and UN troops fire in air to stop machete-armed villagers
- Congolese army apparently attacked UN troops meeting rebels
- Peacekeepers, Congo army to resume joint fight against Rwandan rebels - U.N
- Wave of kidnappings, violence hampering DR Congo aid delivery - U.N.
- SAAF helicopter fired at in the DRC
- Congo looking into new charges against ICC convict Katanga
- Suspected Ugandan rebels kill four soldiers in eastern DR Congo: army
- Congo opposition to run against Sassou Nguesso in March polls
- DR Congo's Catholic Church set to cancel pro-democracy march in blow to opposition
- Congo edges towards crisis as opposition digs in against Kabila
Power of the Rooivalk on show during three-day demonstration
by Denel Corporate, 3 February 2016
The demonstration at the Denel Overberg Test Range will showcase the effectiveness of the Rooivalk deployed in tandem with the Denel Mokopa missile system.
Denel honours top-performing students who excel in science, technology
by Denel Corporate, 27 January 2016
Matriculants who participated in Denel's maths and science enrichment programmes received a 100% pass rate in the 2015 year-end exams.
Saab signs contract for Carl-Gustaf ammunition
by Saab, 13 January 2016
The total order value for the man-portable weapon system is about SEK1.4 billion. Information about the company will not be made public.