Figures released by the French Air Force air defence and air operations command (CDAOA) for 2018 show a high level of activity in Africa and the Middle East, as well as in French airspace.
The French Air Force air defence and air operations command (CDAOA) has released data relating to French AF air operations for the full year 2018. The data show a high level of activity in Africa and the Middle East, as well as in French airspace.
One of the highlights of the past year was Operation Hamilton in Syria carried out during the night of 13th/14th April, an operation involving five Rafales, four Mirage 2000-5s, two E-3F AWACS aircraft and six C-135 in-flight refuelling tankers. The fighters flew a round trip of 6,750km. Nine Scalp/Storm Shadow cruise missiles were fired.
According to air vice-marshal (général de division) Vincent Cousin, second-in-command at the CDAOA, the operation constituted a good showcase of the know-how, competences and capabilities of the French AF. The French officer observes that, for the duration of the 48-hour operation, the Rafales based in Jordan continued to provide close air support in Syria, while the UAE-based Rafales were involved in missions in the Persian Gulf. Nor was there any interruption in missions in Africa and in French airspace.
Among the key figures for 2018:
Operation Chammal (Iraq and Syria):
• 922 fighter missions, 132 weapons fired
• 20 AWACS missions; 41 C-135 missions
Operation Barkhane (Sahel)
• 1,650 fighter missions, 64 weapons fired
• 1,470 MQ-9 Reaper UAV missions
• 361 in-flight refuelling missions
• 5,762t of cargo shipped by transport aircraft
• 298 abnormal situation reports
• 88 fighter quick reaction alerts
• 61 helicopter quick reaction alerts