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Helicopter pilots train in Gap. But delay in deployment

(BRUSSELS2) The armed forces of the “ Badland "attacked a military convoy of the" goodland », composed of three vehicles. Since 1987, the common border with the " Badland " problematic. This time, men high up on the side of the mountain fired at the three vehicles in the convoy. The soldiers surround their vehicles with red smoke so as to create a delimited zone of protection while waiting for reinforcements. They will come from the air... Two helicopters arrive on the other side of the mountain, deposit there men armed with rocket launchers which ensure the cover of the alpine hunters, deposited by two other helicopters. The security of the convoy is now restored...

Puma downhill © Floriane Pellegrin

Intra-European mountain flying training

This scenario may seem fictitious. However, it is not far from the reality in which the European forces will have to move on a terrain like Afghanistan, a mountainous country. Because that's what it was all about during these two weeks of exercise and training at the Gap Tallard air base (Hautes Alpes): providing training adapted to mountain operating sites (altitude , hot air and difficult flight conditions). More than 150 people of different nationalities (Czechs, Hungarians, Poles, Spaniards, British, Belgians and French) worked together.

A dozen helicopters of all types (Puma, Gazelle, Mi171...) took part in the training which is part of the Franco-British initiative launched in 2008 to increase the availability of certain helicopters (read: The modernization of Type Mi helicopters: step by step). A program further developed within the framework of the European Defense Agency EDA (read his press release ...only in English, as usual!).

Helicopter Mi-171 Czech ® French Army

Delay in deployment

But not all helicopters will be able to deploy in time in Afghanistan. According to our Czech colleagues, the deployment of Mi171s at Sarane airport for the transport of people and equipment cannot be done "as soon as possible" before the end of the year. In question : “a delay in the offer from foreign partners. And the "differences" between the administration and the entrepreneurs» according to Martina Fiserova.

(Floriane Pellegrin, in Gap)

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).

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