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Algeria receives additional Mi-26T2s

An Algerian Mi-26.The Algerian Air Force has taken delivery of another two Mi-26T2 helicopters from Russia, after the first two were delivered in June last year. Algeria has 14 on order.

The two aircraft were seen arriving at Kerkyra-IoannisKapodistrias International Airport, Corfu, on November 22 during their delivery flight.Two more of the heavy lift helicopters are expected to arrive in Algeria this year.

The first two were delivered to Algeria in June 2015, passing through Greece on the eighth of that month before arriving at Biskra Air Base, Algeria, on 9 June. They are now based there, reports Air Forces Daily.

In August last year Russia’s Interfax-AVN agency reported that Algeria’s initial order was for six aircraft, and that a second contract was signed for another eight.It is believed that Algeria signed the first contract on 26 June 2013.

Deliveries of the first six will conclude by the end of the year while the eight from the next contract will be delivered in 2017.

The agreement signed with Rostvertol includes training of Algerian pilots and technicians.

The modernised Mi-26T2 features a night vision compatible glass cockpit and improved avionics and can lift 20 tons of payload.

At the moment the Algerian Air Force flies approximately 30 Mi-24-III Super Hinds, 16 AS 355/555s, 3 Bell 412s, 10 Super Lynx, three Ka-32s, 28 Mi-2s and 100 Mi-8/17/171s. Several older Mi-6 and Mi-4 helicopters may also be in service. Algeria has ordered 42 Mi-28N Night Hunter attack helicopters and the first of these was seen flying in Algerian colours in October 2015.

39 of the Algerian Air Force’s Mi-171s are being upgraded by Russia's St Petersburg Aircraft Repair Company (SPARK). TASS reported that a few Mi-171Sh helicopters still have to be overhauled, with the aircraft to be shipped to the customer in the coming weeks.

Russia sold Algeria 42 Mi-171Sh helicopters worth $180 million in 2002. Three were subsequently lost since then. The Mi-171Sh can be armed with 9M120 Ataka and 9M114 Shturm antitank guided missiles. The Mi-171Sh is equipped with two VK-2500 engines and a defensive aids suite.

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