Tuesday, September 7, 2010

New F-16 Block 52s Moved to Samungli Air Base Near Quetta

Three of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF)’s newest acquisitions Block 52 F-16 jet fighters – previously stationed at the Shahbaz airbase near Jacobabad – have been moved to the Samungli airbase near Quetta, sources told The Express Tribune on Saturday. The Shahbaz base was under the threat of being flooded in August. The exact date on which the jets were flown to Quetta could not be ascertained.However, an official said that the jets will be moved back to the Shahbaz airbase as soon the flood situation improves.The report said that some members of the technical support team from the Lockheed Martin (the aircraft manufacturer and other officials of the US Air Force, had left the Shahbaz airbase for Quetta, but other members are still there.

Over 22 water lifting pumps are dumping back the floodwaters from the canal back into the Indus River. The base is safe and secure because of this extraordinary safety plan, built with the financial and technical assistance of the US at a cost of millions of dollars.The fleet of F-16 aircraft arrived in June at the newly-upgraded base, which is under the PAF’s Southern Air Command. Earlier, the base, was being used as a Forward Operating Base by the PAF, but very recently it has been upgraded to house the new F-16 aircraft by installing equipment and radar system.

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