Egypt's Air Force celebrates 20 Years of F-16 operations
The Air Force of the Arab Republic of Egypt celebrated the 20th anniversary of its F-16 aircraft operations this week with a reenactment of the original Egyptian F-16 arrival ceremony at Inshas Air Base near Cairo.
Egyptian and US Air Force officials watched as four F-16 Fighting Falcons participated in a ceremony commemorating the day two decades ago when Egypt acquired front-line US-built fighters, after years of using military equipment supplied by the former Soviet Union.
Egypt received a total of 42 F-16s in its first order and since then has purchased five more lots of aircraft, for a total of 220 Fighting Falcons. The final aircraft under current orders was completed recently at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company in Fort Worth, Tex., and will arrive in Egypt later this year.
"Egypt operates one of the largest F-16 fleets in the world and has had a distinguished record flying the aircraft," said Robert T. Elrod, executive vice president for programs at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company. "As we observe this historic anniversary, we are also celebrating the long, cooperative association our company has had with Egypt as a customer. This relationship extends beyond Lockheed Martin to include many other US companies in the F-16 industrial team."
Egypt was the first Islamic country to purchase the F-16. Pakistan, Turkey, Bahrain, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Indonesia have since acquired or ordered the aircraft. The Egyptian Air Force will celebrate the 70th anniversary of its founding this October.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a leader in the design, development, systems integration, production and support of advanced military aircraft and related technologies. Its customers include the military services of the United States and allied countries throughout the world. Products include the F-16, F-22, F-35 JSF, F-117, C-5, C-27J, C-130, P-3 and U-2.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a unit of Lockheed Martin Corp., headquartered in Bethesda, Md. Lockheed Martin is a global enterprise principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced technology systems, products and services. Employing about 125,000 people worldwide, Lockheed Martin had 2001 sales of $24 billion. — (menareport.com)
© 2002 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)