The ALT provides significant resources in Mali, both in support of special forces or conventional ground forces. French helicopters engaged in tasks as diverse as the destruction of targets or transport.
These are the helicopters the army who opened hostilities in Mali. Facing down towards the south of the Islamist fighters, January 11, they are Gazelles 4th Regiment Special Forces helicopters (HRTS) which neutralize the columns of pick-up. Deployed from Burkina Faso, two devices are affected: one that will be destroyed by its crew, the other will be reduced to Mopti, where his pilot, Lieutenant Damien Boiteux.
Showcased various press briefings from the Department of Defense in recent days, the crews of light aviation Army (ALT) continue to be first in line. they provide direct fire support to During the reconquest of the city by the forces of Diabaly Malian and French between yesterday and today.
For now, the group airmobile (GAM) implements a dozen devices from the 1st and 5th Regiments gunships (RHC). 300 of 2000 French soldiers in Mali are from the weapon . It should be added the fourth HRTS ways in which the General Staff of the armed forces remains very discreet, but that could be about five units (two and four Gazelles and Pumas Cougars) .
Eventually, the GAM must deploy a dozen helicopters (so it goes to 20 with special forces) . Tigers who must quickly get the 5th RHC and provide substantial firepower in addition Gazelles, already used for support fire, destruction and target recognition. In all, a little less than a dozen utility helicopters carrying facilitate rapid small groups of people from one area to another, as needed. These can also be used for medical evacuations.
Note that Belgium also provides two medical helicopters, the Agusta A109. For its part, the Malian army has also lean airmobile. The weekly Air & Cosmos evokes two MI24 roadworthy.