18 August 2021
by Tim Ripley
More than 40 Afghan Air Force (AAF) aircraft have been flown to Uzbekistan to prevent them from falling in the hands of the Taliban after the group regain control over Afghanistan on 15 August.
The arrival of the platforms at Termez Airport in southern Uzbekistan was reported by local media on 16 August, with commercial satellite imagery of the site subsequently confirming the relocation of a significant part of the AAF's fleet. Nearly 600 Afghans were reported as being aboard the aircraft and to be seeking asylum in Uzbekistan.
An Afghan Air Force (AAF) A-29B Super Tucano light attack aircraft. More than 40 AAF aircraft have been flown to Uzbekistan to prevent them from falling in the hands of the Taliban after the group regain control over Afghanistan on 15 August. (USAF 438th Air Expeditionary Wing)
Satellite imagery from Planet Labs appeared to indicate that about 26 helicopters and 21 small, fixed-wing aircraft were at Termez on 16 August: 11 C-208 utility aircraft and 10 A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft, along with up to 16 Mi-17, five Mi-25, and five UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters. Social media imagery posted on 17 August appeared to confirm that at least three UH-60s were at Termez.
A day earlier, open-source aircraft tracking websites had indicated more than 10 Afghan aircraft including C-208s and Mi-17s had left Kabul heading into Uzbek airspace.
Local media reported on 15 August that one A-29 had been shot down by Uzbek air defence forces, although subsequent reports suggested it collided in mid-air with an Uzbek MiG-29s, with images emerging online showing the wreckage of the aircraft.
Already a Janes subscriber? Read the full article via the
Interested in subscribing, see What we do
More than 40 Afghan Air Force (AAF) aircraft have been flown to Uzbekistan to prevent them from fall...