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Djibouti parades Bayraktar UCAVs

A file image of the Baykar Bayraktar TB2 UCAV, which Djibouti received from Turkey. (Baykar)

Djibouti has revealed itself to be an operator of the Baykar Bayraktar TB2, parading the Turkish-built unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) at its independence day celebrations on 27 June.

Two Bayraktar UCAVs were showcased in a military parade to mark the 45th anniversary of independence for the east African country, with each being transported on the back of a flatbed truck.

With both UCAVs featuring the national flag of Djibouti and the markings of the Djibouti Air Force (Force Aerienne du Djibouti: FAD), one aircraft carried two underwing Roketsan MAM-L smart micro munitions, while the second was unarmed.

Although the procurement/sale and delivery of the Bayraktar TB2 have not been announced by either the Djibouti or Turkish governments, and they do not appear in any satellite imagery of the Djiboutiā€“Ambouli International Airport (the sole operating base for the FAD), online flight tracking services recorded an Ilyushin Il-76 heavy-lift cargo aircraft operating between the two countries in early June.

Before the arrival of the Bayraktar TB2, the FAD had no offensive combat capability, instead being primarily concerned with logistical support and communications duties.

The Bayraktar TB2 is a medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) UAV, which was developed to provide the Turkish Armed Forces with a tactical intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance capability. According to Janes All the World ' s Aircraft: Unmanned

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