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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Stretched SAAF maritime capability faces increased workload

C-47TP SkytrainThe SA Air Force (SAAF) has only one squadron dedicated to maritime patrol and reconnaissance and it currently has seven aircraft on strength.

AFB Ysterplaat in Cape Town is home to 35 Squadron and its C-47TP. From here the squadron has been as far afield as Pemba in Mozambique on extended deployment to support the Operation Copper counter-piracy tasking where the Navy has the lead.

This has been reviewed and Pemba will no longer serve as temporary home base for the Squadron. According to SANDF Joint Operations the Mozambican port city will be replaced by either AFB Waterkloof or Richards Bay as temporary base for the aircraft and its air- and ground-crew tasked with aerial anti-piracy work.

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