The Nigerian Air Force held a ceremony to mark the delivery of the three JF-17 fighters provided by manufacturers Chengdu (China) and PAC (Pakistan) on Thursday.
The fighters had arrived in the African country in March, but only now, on the Air Force’s 57th birthday, they have been inducted.
Aeronautics Chief of Staff, Marshal Oladayo Amao, said the JF-17s will be used “towards combating terrorism, insurgency, armed banditry and other threats.”
According to NAF, it was “inducted 23 brand new aircraft into its inventory, comprising 10 Super Mushshak trainer aircraft and 13 rotary wing combat platforms and 5 Mi-35M helicopter gunships.”
The Air Force is about to receive the first A-29 Super Tucano attack and training turboprops, which are being completed in the USA. Nigeria obtained 12 aircraft through an aid package from the US government.
The JF-17 is a single-engine fighter developed in partnership between China and Pakistan, its largest customer. The aircraft is equipped with an RD-39 engine and can reach Mach 1.6 and has a combat radius of up to 1,352 km.
The Sino-Pakistani fighter is also used by Myanmar and is being offered to Argentina, which currently does not have supersonic fighters.