Afghan Army to get Black Hawk Helicopters, ScanEagle drones from US

Afghan Army to get Black Hawk Helicopters, ScanEagle drones from US

The United States has awarded a Washington-based firm for the purchase and delivery of five new ScanleEagle drones for the Afghan national defense and security forces.

The Department of Defense in a statement said “Insitu Inc., Bingen, Washington, is being awarded $19,611,424 for firm-fixed-price delivery order N6833517F0079 against a previously issued basic ordering agreement (N68335-16-G-0046) in support of the government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.”

The statement further added that the order provides for the procurement of five ScanEagle Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UASs), spares, support equipment, field service representatives, operators to provide technical services, site surveys, site activations teams, and program management to sustain and operate the ScanEagle UASs within Afghanistan.

“Work will be performed in Afghanistan (95 percent); and Bingen, Washington (5 percent), and is expected to be completed in April 2018.  Afghan Security Forces funding in the amount of $19,611,424 is being obligated on this award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year,” the statement added.

This comes as efforts are underway by the Afghan government and the international allies of Afghanistan to increase the air power of the Afghan security forces.

The commander of the United States Central Command General Joseph L. Votel requested the US Congress to approve the budget for the Afghan forces Blackhawk program.

The Afghan defense officials said the Air Force is expecting to receive the first Blackhawk helicopter from the United States in the month of October.