From the event

28 Sep 2007

PR# 2007-660

French Mirages arrive at Kandahar Airfield

KABUL, Afghanistan – The first of six Mirage aircraft from 2/3 Champagne Squadron, French Expeditionary Air Group, landed at Kandahar Airfield recently.

The squadron, which is relocating from its former detachment base at Dushanbe Airport, Tajikistan, will now have greater capability to support ISAF and Coalition operations in southern Afghanistan.  Operating from Dushanbe, the fighters’ flying time to the south was approximately 50 minutes; now stationed at Kandahar Airfield, the Mirages can now be on station in 10 minutes.

Squadron personnel are excited about the challenges ahead and are pleased they will have more efficient and flexible response times to participate in operations.

“We are looking forward to joining forces here at Kandahar and Regional Command South,” said Lt. Col. Gilles Juventin, the French detachment commander.  “It’s a great opportunity to operate in a different tactical environment and it will allow us much better integration with our allies.”

When the relocation is complete the French Air Wing will have 150 personnel, including a Special Forces combat group of 20 and 100 personnel from the Air Expeditionary group. 

The Mirage 2000D is an air-to-ground fighter which has been operational with the French Air Force since 1992; it has seen active service in operations over Bosnia, Kosovo and Afghanistan.

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