German personnel in Mali receive medevac training with Starlite Super Puma


South Africa’s Starlite Aviation is supplying a Super Puma helicopter to the European Union Training Mission Mali (EUTM), and German personnel deployed to the West African country have been using it for medical evacuation training.

The Bundeswehr said Starlite’s Super Puma is configured for medical evacuation with two stretchers and medical equipment, and was recently used for a day-long training exercise by German personnel to rescue injured comrades as it strives not to leave anyone behind.

The exercise, near the town of Koulikoro, practiced locating injured personnel on the ground and guiding the helicopter in for landing, which can be hazardous due to dusty conditions.

Germany contributes to the United Nation’s Minusma peacekeeping mission in Mali with up to 1 100 soldiers given permission to take part in this operation by the German Bundestag, although in practice less than a thousand are actually deployed.

This complements its participation in the EU Training Mission Mali, with approximately 190 German soldiers training Malian troops in infantry tactics, logistics and other disciplines (although up to 450 German soldiers can be deployed for the EUTM mission). So far around 13 000 Malian soldiers have been trained in various courses.

Troops from 22 European Union member states and five non-EU states work with both the Armed Forces of Mali (FAMa) and the G5 Sahel Joint Force.