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Brazil Introduces First Mi-35s to Active Service

"Brazil is changing levels in respect of Defence. We are no longer mere buyers; we now receive and internalize technology. These helicopters strengthen aviation rotorcraft."

With these words the Defense Minister Nelson Jobim christened the Brazilian Air Force’s newly-acquired MI-35 helicopters from, which as of Saturday (17) have been designated AH-2 Sabre. The new aircraft will be based at the Air Base in Porto Velho, in Rondonia State, where they will be used by the 2nd Squadron of the 8th Aviation Group (2 / 8 º GAV) (known as the “Poti” Squadron.)

The arrival of the Sabre in the Brazilian Air Force marks a series of “firsts.” It is the first Russian military aircraft acquired by Brazil. It is also the first helicopter in the FAB inventory that was designed specifically for combat. The attack helicopter previously used by the FAB, the H-50 Squirrel, is an aircraft designed for civilian use and adapted for military functions. Sabre is different, because it was born with military DNA.

This new weapon of FAB has a number of resources that the Brazilian helicopter pilots, until now, had only seen from afar. The aircraft has armor protection, fixed 23 mm, double-barreled cannon mounted on a mobile turret, the ability to launch rockets and surface-air missiles, heat suppressors hinders the view of the aircraft by infra red, and a series of counter-measures. "I get shivers," said Lt. Leonardo Bezerra Salim, one of the pilots of Poti Squadron already operating the new aircraft. "It's an operational leap expected by generations of helicopter pilots of the FAB," says Salim.

The Sabres will enhance the ability of quick response and the presence of FAB in the Western Amazon. They will serve on the policing of the region's airspace and help curb illegal activities in the border area.

To operate these aircraft the Air Force Command Squadron began the transfer of Poti from the city of Recife, in northeastern Brazil, to the air base in Porto Velho, in the heart of the Amazon.

"No one can tell Brazil how to deal with the Amazon. We will protect the Amazon for us and the world, and let the world know that, "said Minister Jobim. “The Poti Squadron and its brand new Sabre AH-2 will be powerful tools for such protection. And from now are ready to face any threat.” (ends)
New Attack Helicopters Are Presented in Porto Velho