Sangaris: First A400M landing at Bangui
On November 7, an A400M Atlas belonging to the 1/61 “Touraine” transport squadron landed for the first time at Bangui airport, in the Central African Republic. The aircraft landed at 9:45 on M’Poko Airport to unload 7.4 tonnes of supplies intended for the Sangaris Force. The air force’s latest tactical transport aircraft was deployed on overseas operations shortly after its delivery last year.
The aircraft is perfectly suited to the current requirements of French forces deployed in Central Africa. Its payload of 20 to 30 tonnes and its strategic range allow substantial savings in terms of asset efficiency and substantial savings in flight times compared to the previous-generation aircraft it replaces.
About 2,000 French soldiers are currently deployed on Operation Sangaris, alongside 6,700 troops belonging to the United Nations Mission for Stabilization in Central African Republic (MINUSCA). Begun on Dec 5, 2013, Operation Sangaris is intended to re-establish minimal levels of security in the Central African Republic, and to assist in standing up the UN mission.