This week the Royal Air Force held the first combined flight safety meeting at the Basrah International Airport, which is becoming a significant transport hub for Iraq’s second city. The meeting, that was hosted by the Group Captain Dean Andrew, the Commanding Officer of 903 Expeditionary Air Wing (EAW), brought together a host of key Iraqi Air Force and Basrah International Airport management to develop a strategy to bring the airport flight safety into line with international standards. “This meeting was a real mile stone in the ongoing development of Basrah International Airport into a fully functioning commercial hub. This is a small, but significant step will enhance the attraction of Southern Iraq to investors from all over the world allowing commerce and reconstruction to flourish,” said Group Captain Andrew.
Flight safety standards are paramount to ensure that the airport can manage the increasing number of flights. On average there are over 30 flights a week coming into the airport, with a significant increase during the Hajj, when pilgrims raise the number of flights.
The EAW has now been in theatre for over 5 years with around 450 service personnel providing much needed aviation support to British, Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces. Increasingly, the Royal Air Force are working hand in hand with the Iraqi Air Force, who fly C-130, transport aircraft and CH 2000, reconnaissance aircraft that considerably enhances the Iraqi Security Force’ s capability; this week they have been conducting joint operations with the Iraqi and UK Army units.
Whilst 903 EAW enables Multi National Division (SE) to deliver a full range of British and Iraqi aviation capability from Iraqi CH 2000s through to dealing with Royal Air Force C17s, they also work alongside Basrah International Airport staff as they work towards a full take over of the running of the airport.
Source: Royal Air Force UK
Pictures provided by Royal Air Force UK
For further information about Royal Air Force UK, click here