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Tunisia receives first Texan trainer aircraft

Textron announced delivery of the first of eight Beechcraft T-6 Texan II trainer aircraft to Tunisia on 8 November. (Textron)

Tunisia has received the first of eight Beechcraft T-6C Texan II turboprop trainer aircraft ordered in 2021.

Beechcraft's parent company Textron announced the delivery on 8 November, noting that the aircraft will be delivered to the Tunisian Air Force's 13 Squadron at Sfax Air Base. The second aircraft will be delivered in the coming weeks, with the remainder to follow until the end of 2023.

“The Foreign Military Sales (FMS) contract comprises eight T-6C Texan II advanced military training aircraft, in-country field service and logistics support representatives, programme management support, interim contractor support for the first year, training for pilots and maintenance professionals, spare engines, spare parts, and aircraft support equipment,” Textron said.

Training of the initial cadre of pilots began on 31 October at Textron Aviation Defense facilities in Wichita, Kansas. The Texan II will replace the Tunisian Air Force's fleet of Aero L-39 Albatros and SIAI-Marchetti SF 260 Warrior aircraft, which have been in service since 1995 and 1974, respectively.

As noted by the US State Department in its initial approval of the Textron sale to Tunisia, “the proposed sale will replace Tunisia's ageing trainer fleet and allow Tunisia to continue training pilots to support Tunisia's counter-terrorism and border security missions”.

Separate to the approval and FMS contract for the trainer variant T-6C, the US government approved four AT-6 Wolverine light-attack versions of the aircraft for Tunisia in February 2020.

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