Private military contractor Dyck Advisory Group (DAG) has apparently lost another aircraft in Mozambique, this time a Bat Hawk ultralight.
The aircraft is reported to have crashed in the vicinity of Muidumbe, a district of Cabo Delgado Province, on 15 June, said Jasmine Opperman from the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project.
Piers Pigou, Crisis Group’s Senior Consultant for Southern Africa, said he had made contact with Dyck Advisory Group, which confirmed their Bat Hawk had crashed on a routine patrol. After losing contact with the aircraft, the badly injured pilot was located using the aircraft’s tracker beacon and recovered from dense forest.
“The pilot was then evacuated to South Africa where he remains in a stable condition in hospital. According to DAG, the cause of the crash is not known but it was not any form of enemy action,” Pigou stated.
“The implications for DAG and by extension Mozambican security force operations are unclear,” he added. “This is the second aircraft to be lost since being contracted; a Gazelle helicopter was destroyed during an operation in early April.”
The Gazelle (ZU-ROJ) appears to have been shot down at the beginning of April by Islamist insurgents, which it was targeting at the time.
Various aircraft have been observed in Mozambique supporting private military contractors, including a UH-1 Huey, Cessna Caravan, Bell Long Ranger, Diamond DA 42 and CADG Helix.
In an article published at the beginning of June, the Telegraph said Lionel Dyck’s group has “helped turn the tide against an army of militants, who have been waging a shad oar in the country’s northern Cabo Delgado province for more than two years now.” Dyck confirmed to the newspaper that his helicopters and personnel were operating in Mozambique and that they were playing an important role in fighting off that country’s Islamist insurgency.