Republic of Iraq Buys 28 Czech L-159 ALCA Aircraft
(Source: Ministry of Defence & Armed Forces of the Czech Republic; issued October 15, 2012)
As expected, Iraq has signed a contract for the acquisition of 28 Aero L-159 ALCA light attack and training aircraft, seen here in Czech service, for an unspecified price. (Aero photo)

"I am glad I can announce that we have agreed upon delivery of 28 pieces of L-159 to Iraqi Air Force," Czech Defence Minister Alexandr Vondra said at the press conference held at the end of talks with his Iraqi counterpart.

Both Minister of Defence of the Republic of Iraq Sadoon Al-Dulaimi and Minister of Defence of the Czech Republic Alexandr Vondra informed the media immediately after their return from the Aero Vodochody Company, the manufacturer of L-159 ALCA (Attack Light Combat Aircraft). Also Prime Minister of the Republic of Iraq Nouri Al-Maliki visited the Aero company and participated in static and flight demonstrations.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki with his delegation met first with the Czech Prime Minister Petr Necas at the beginning of their visit on 11 October 2012, and confirmed ongoing interest in defence cooperation with the Czech Republic.

Negotiations on the delivery of L-159, which lasted two years, will significantly contribute both to defence capabilities of Iraq and will help introduce this type of aircraft to other markets, added Minister Vondra.

Defence ministers also discussed possible delivery of new small arms from the Ceska Zbrojovka Uhersky Brod to Iraq and Czech offer to modernise T-72 tanks of Iraqi Armed Forces. (ends)



Iraqi Government Delegation Visited AERO Vodochody
(Source: Aero Vodochody; issued October 12, 2012)
The Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki headed an official delegation of Iraqi ministers who visited AERO Vodochody today. The discussion focused mainly on L-159 aircraft.

In addition to PM Maliki, the acting Minister of Defence and Minister of Culture Saadun al-Dulaimi, the Minister of Foreign Affairs Hoshyar Zebari and the Minister of Trade Khairalla Hasan Babaker came to Aero. The Iraqi government have already expressed a serious interest in buying Czech jet fighters several times and this visit was a part of long lasting negotiations. Aero cooperated with Ministry of Defence of the Czech Republic on these negotiations and they would not be as successful without its participation.

“We have a rich experience of cooperation in L-29 and L-39 programs and we are here to create at least as successful future of collaboration,” said president of AERO Vodochody, Ladislav Simek. “We are fully committed to fulfil and even exceed all the requirements and expectations of Republic of Iraq.”

L-159 Advanced Light Combat and Training Aircraft is designed to fulfil a variety of combat missions including air-to-ground, air-to-air and reconnaissance. Currently, L-159 aircraft serve with the Czech Air Force, which uses them for Close Air Support, Advanced Training and Air Defence missions. L-159s have been participating in numerous NATO exercises, mainly in air-to-ground role.

AERO Vodochody is the largest aerospace manufacturer in the Czech Republic with tradition since 1919. The military program of Aero is historically the largest producer of jet training aircraft in the world and a partner to several air forces, particularly the Czech Air Force. Aero has produced more than 3.5 thousands of L-29 Dolphin jet trainer aircraft and about three thousands of L-39 Albatros aircraft, which is still one of the most popular jet trainers in the world.

Today, Aero also focuses on aerostructures programs and participates in projects of world leading aerospace manufacturers such as Airbus, Boeing, Embraer or Sikorsky.

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