Sustainment deal for Iraqi planes approved

Feb. 24, 2016 at 2:15 PM Follow @upi

An Iraqi request to obtain sustainment services for its KA-350 aircraft has passed muster with the State Department.
An Iraqi air force maintainer signals both engines have started properly for the King Air 350 light transport aircraft at New al-Muthana Air Base, Iraq, on Sept. 6, 2008. U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Paul Villanueva II
Sign up for our Security Newsletter
Preview our latest newsletter

WASHINGTON, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Iraq is seeking a five-year sustainment package from the United States for its fleet of Beechcraft King Air 350 aircraft, the U.S. military reports.

The proposed deal -- through the U.S. Foreign Military Sales program -- is worth an estimated $350 million and has been approved by the U.S. State Department.

Iraq operates five KA-350 ISR planes for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions against al-Qaida affiliates and Islamic State forces. According to the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the purchase of a sustainment package will allow the Iraq Air Force to continue using the plane after its current sustainment package ends.

Sustainment work to be performed under the contract includes operational and intermediate depot level maintenance, spare parts, component repair, publication updates, maintenance training, and logistics.

The DSCA, which manages the FMS program, told Congress no government or contractor personnel would need to deploy to Iraq if the sale was implemented.