Amid efforts to bolster the capabilities of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) specifically the Afghan Air Force, a US General in Kabul has said the Afghan military is expected to fly the first surveillance drone next month.
Major General Gordon Davis, commander of the unit that procures new equipment for the Afghans, told Reuters “We are just getting the first drones that will be deployed by the corps.”
“We’ve been preparing sites. The pieces and parts are coming in now,” Gen. David added.
The US Department of Defense (DoD) announced in November last year that a contract worth $70 million ha sbeen awarded to a US-based company for the procurement of the ScanEagle drones.
A statement by DoD said the systems include 65 ScanEagle drones in total, along with spare parts, support equipment, field service support, as well as an in-theatre training facility.
The addition of the surveillance drones could play a vital role in helping the Afghan forces fighting the anti-government armed militant groups amid deteriorating security situation across the country.
Meanwhile, the commander of the Afghan Air Force Major General Abdul Wahab Wardak said last week that the A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft will start combat operations with the Afghan Air Force from the month of March.
Gen. Wardak further added that the Afghan Air Force has so far received four of the eight aircraft from the United States and the remaining four will be handed over in the near future.