Saturday 18 June 2016


By Stijn Mitzer and Joost Oliemans

The Sudanese Air Force has had a turbulent history ever since its founding in January 1956, the year that Sudan gained independence from Great Britain. Originally trained and equipped by Egyptians and the British, it acquired aircraft and helicopters from the Soviet Union in the late 1960s, followed by Chinese examples several years later. The Sudanese Air Force (SuAF) then sought to purchase aircraft from France, but ended up acquiring U.S. F-5s and C-130s. In the late 1980s it began receiving military aid in the form of aircraft and helicopters from Libya, followed by the delivery of more Chinese aircraft shortly after, which would continue to deliver aircraft in the last two decades. In more recent years the SuAF's core is made up by aircraft acquired from Belarus, Russia and China. This is not all however, as the SuAF also operates or used to operate aircraft sourced from a variety of countries such as Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Canada.