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Tunisian Air Force
The Tunisian Air Force (Arabic: اجيش الطيران‎‎, French: Armée de l'Air[1]) is one of the branches of the Tunisian Armed Forces.
Tunisian Air Force
جيش الطيران

Badge of the Tunisian Air Force
Founded1959; 62 years ago
Country
 Tunisia
TypeAir force
RoleAerial warfare
Size4,500 personnel
Part ofTunisian Armed Forces
HeadquartersBizerte
Anniversaries24 July
Equipment159 aircraft
Engagements
Commanders
Commander-in-ChiefPresident Kais Saied
Commander of the Air ForceGeneral Taïeb Lajimi
Insignia
Roundel
Aircraft flown
AttackAermacchi MB-326
FighterNorthrop F-5
PatrolSIAI-Marchetti S.208
TrainerAero L-59 Super Albatros, Aermacchi SF.260
TransportG-222, Let L-410 Turbolet, Lockheed C-130B/H/J-30 Hercules/Super Hercules
History
The Tunisian Air Force was established in 1959, three years after Tunisia regained its independence from France. It took deliveries of its first aircraft, eight Saab 91 Safirs, in 1960, later to be complemented by further Saab 91 Safirs. The Tunisian Air Force entered the jet age in 1965 with the purchase of 8 MB326-B's and then 5 MB326-LT's. In 1969, the country received 15 ex-USAF F-86F Sabre. Between 1974 and 1978 12 SF.260 Warriors and 9 SF.260C were delivered for basic training. In 1977–78 8 MB.326KT's were supplied for light attack duties. In 1981 Tunisia ordered 12 F-5's (8 F-5E and 4 F-5F), deliveries taking place in 1984–85. Then adding 5 ex-USAF F-5E's from the Alconbury Aggressor Squadron (in 1989). In 1985 Tunisia ordered 2 C130-H's Hercules. In 1995 a major Czech order was placed with 12 Aero L-59 armed trainers and 3 Let L-410UVP transports ordered. In 1997 five surplus C-130B's were delivered from the USA. Tunisia has two C-130J-30s on order for delivery in 2013 and 2014.
Possible purchase of 12 UH-60M[2]
There are four main bases: Bizerte/Sidi Ahmed, Gafsa, Bizerte/La Karouba and Sfax.
Organization
The order of battle of the Tunisian Air force is as below:[3]
Tunis-Laouina
36°50′57″N 010°14′51″E
No. 12 Squadron
Transport squadron, Let L-410 Turbolet
Bizerte-Sidi Ahmed
37°14′58″N 009°46′48″E
No. 11 Squadron
Jet trainer squadron, Aermacchi MB-326
No. 15 Squadron
Fighter squadron, Northrop F-5 Tiger
No. 21 Squadron
Transport squadron, C-130 Hercules, G-222
Bizerte-La Karouba
37°15′10″N 009°47′40″E
No. 31 Squadron
Helicopter squadron, Bell 205, UH-1 Iroquois
No. 32 Squadron
Helicopter squadron, Alouette II, Ecureuil
No. 33 Squadron
Helicopter squadron
No. 36 Squadron
Helicopter squadron
Sfax-Thyna
34°42′55″N 010°41′47″E
No. 13 Squadron
Light utility and liaison squadron, flying SF-260s
No. 14 Squadron
Light utility and liaison squadron, flying SF-260s
No. ? Squadron
Helicopter squadron
Gafsa
34°25′04″N 008°48′45″E
No. 16 Squadron
Jet trainer squadron, flying L-59s
No. 34 Squadron
Aircraft
A C-130 taxis down the runway at Lajes Field, Portugal
A Tunisian HH-3 helicopter participating in a rescue exercise in Bizerte
A SIAI-Marchetti SF.260
Current inventory
AircraftOriginTypeVariantIn serviceNotes
Combat Aircraft
Northrop F-5United StatesfighterF-5E12[4]
F-16 Fighting FalconUnited StatesmultiroleF-16V14 on order set to be received in 2023
Transport
Let L-410Czech Republicutility5[4]
C-130 HerculesUnited Statestransport / SARC-130B/H7[4]
C-130J Super HerculesUnited Statestactical airlifter2[4]
Cessna 208 CaravanUnited Statesground attackAC-208 Combat Caravan2-4
Super King AirUnited StatesISRModel 360ER2 on order
Helicopters
Bell 205United Statesutility36[4]of which 16 are UH-1H’s
Bell 412United Statesutility2[4]
Bell OH-58United StatesreconnaissanceOH-58D18[4]
Alouette IIFranceliaison / light utility8[4]
Alouette IIIFranceliaison / utility8[4]
Sikorsky HH-3United StatesSAR / transport15[4]
Sikorsky UH-60United StatesutilityBattlehawk kits12[4] +4 more on order
Eurocopter AS350Franceutility / liaison6[4]
Trainer Aircraft
Northrop F-5United Statesconversion trainerF-5F3[4]
Aero L-39Czech Republicjet trainer9[4]
Beechcraft T-6 Texan IIUnited StatesBasic trainer / Attack12+4on order
Aermacchi MB-326Italyjet trainer10[5]
SIAI-Marchetti SF.260Italytrainer17[4]
UAV
TAI AnkaTurkeyUAV3[6][7]On order
MQ-1B PredatorUnited StatesReconnaissance2-4
Camcopter S-100AustriaUAV4-6
References
  1. ^ "Présentation au profil de l'armée de l'air" (in French). Retrieved 11 March 2020.
  2. ^ "Tunisia – UH-60M Black Hawk Helicopters - The Official Home of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency". Archived from the original on 27 July 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Tunisian Air Force OrBat". Scramble. Archived from the original on 15 December 2010. Retrieved 5 August 2007.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o "World Air Forces 2021". FlightGlobal. 4 December 2020. Retrieved 5 January 2021.
  5. ^ Lake, Jon (15 October 2019). "T-6C Texan II Sale Possible for Tunisia". ainonline.
  6. ^ "Turkey to export Anka Combat Drones to Tunisia". www.defenseworld.net. Retrieved 3 May 2021.
  7. ^ "Tunisia Signs $80 Million Deal for Three Turkish Anka-S Combat Drones – The Defense Post". Retrieved 3 May 2021.
Sources
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Air force of Tunisia.
World Aircraft Information Files. Brightstar Publishing, London. File 337 Sheet 03
Last edited on 4 May 2021, at 08:25
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