The Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) has received the final batch of Sikorsky S-70 Black Hawk helicopters from the U.S. in December last year.
The delivery brings the total Black Hawks supplied to the kingdom over the nine months, to 12. The U.S. delivered the first two with unprecedented speed in March 2017. The helicopters were delivered by U.S. Air Force (USAF) Boeing C-17 Globemaster III strategic airlifter.
The delivery was marked by a military ceremony on Jan, 28 which included a hostage rescue drill and a flyover. The RJAF and the Quick Reaction Force (QRF) conducted a live fire and infiltration demonstration featuring the Black Hawk’s capabilities.
The ceremony was attended by Prince Feisal, Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. embassy Henry Wooster and General Joseph Votel, commander of the U.S. Central Command.
The statement from the U.S. Embassy in Amman added that the helicopters will strengthen the Jordanian Armed Forces (JAF), its Quick Reaction Force , and the country’s security.
The U.S.-funded “Quick Reaction Force” was set up by Jordan to counter Islamic State, which controls large swathes of territory in neighboring Iraq and Syria. Jordan is among a few Arab states that have taken part in a U.S.-led air campaign against the hardline militant group.
In 2017, the U.S. Congress allocated $470 million to the JAF and RJAF, including training for pilots, crew chiefs, and maintenance technicians, as well as spare parts, ground equipment, weapons, ammunition and shelters for the Black Hawks.