SH-60F Seahawk Helis for Tunisia

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USN SH-60F Seahawk(click to view full) On July 2/10, the US DSCA announced [PDF] Tunisia’s formal request to buy 12 refurbished US Navy SH-60F Seahawk utility Helicopters, plus associated equipment. The SH-60Fs would be offered as Excess Defense Articles (grant EDA notification is being submitted separately). In the US Navy, the SH-60F is a utility and search and rescue helicopter, with secondary submarine hunter capabilities via its dipping sonar and sonobuoys. This distinguishes it from its SH-60B Seahawk/LAMPS counterpart, which adds a maritime radar and surface attack capabilities. Tunisia is expected to use the helicopters for border/sea surveillance, search and rescue, and utility duties. The country sits between Libya and Algeria on the southern Mediterranean coast, right across from Italy, so naval helicopters are very useful to them. Its air force currently flies some old H-3/S-61 Sea Kings, so even used SH-60Fs would represent a frugal upgrade. The recent fall of Tunisia’s government has placed this deal in doubt… Contracts & Key Events Jan 15/11: Tunisia’s government effectively falls, as President Zine Abidine Ben Ali flees for Saudi Arabia after firing the country’s government. Amidst the ashes, a transitional “unity government” is drawn together that includes both supporters and opponents […]

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