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
- Kruger helicopter crash investigation reveals training and skills shortfalls
- Norway and South Africa co-operating on stopping illegal and unlawful fishing
- Mali and Egypt to receive C295s this year
- Mid-life upgrades for SA Navy Valour Class frigates
- US military veterans coming to help in the fight against rhino poaching
AT4 Roquette NG, Carl-Gustaf M4 and NLAW lands at Eurosatory 2016
by Saab, 14 June 2016
These will be presented at Eurosatory 2016 in Paris, including AT4 Roquette NG, Carl-Gustaf M4, and NLAW.
Intelligent camouflage: the future step for Saab Barracuda
by Saab, 14 June 2016
At Eurosatory 2016 Saab highlights new concepts within the field of intelligent camouflage to the attending audience.
Saab to deliver CBRN equipment to Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency
by Saab, 9 June 2016
The company will deliver the test kits with advanced indication equipment to the Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency, in September.