Global Issues

Kenya to Buy MD-530F Armed Helicopters

The US State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to Kenya for MD 530 aircraft.

The Government of Kenya has requested a possible sale of twelve MD 530F weaponized aircraft to include twenty-four Heavy Machine Gun Pod (HMP) 400 systems; twenty-four M260 rocket launchers; four thousand and thirty-two M151 rockets; one thousand five hundred and thirty-six 2.75-inch M274 smoke signature warhead rockets; and four hundred thousand rounds of .50 calibre ammunition.

Also included are communications and navigation equipment, contractor logistics support, training, US Government technical assistance, air-frame and weapon system spare parts support, Contractor Field Service Representative (CFSR) support, and Special Assigned Airlift Mission (SAAM) flight delivery support.

According to the agency:

“This proposed sale contributes to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by improving the security of a strong regional partner who is a regional security leader, undertaking critical operations against al-Shabaab, and a troop contributor to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

The proposed sale of the MD 530F helicopters, weapons, ammunition, support items and technical support will advance Kenya’s efforts to conduct scout and attack rotary wing aircraft operations in support of their AMISOM mission. The MD 530F will also replace Kenya’s aging MD500 fleet, which is the current reconnaissance platform supporting Kenyan ground forces.

This sale will significantly enhance the Kenyan Army’s modernization efforts and increase interoperability with the U.S. Armed Forces and other partners in the region. Additionally, a strong national defense and dedicated military force will assist Kenya in its efforts to maintain stability in East Africa.”

The estimated cost is $253 million.

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