image Photo: Lockheed Martin

IAF upgrades helicopter fleet

The Israel Ministry of Defense (IMoD) has purchased 12 CH-53K helicopters from Lockheed Martin.

By Erin Viner

The agreement was completed following inspection of the production line at to the Lockheed Martin-Sikorsky facilities in Connecticut, USA, earlier this week by IMoD Director General Major General (Ret.) Amir Eshel. Sikorsky, a company of the prominent Lockheed Martin aerospace, arms, defense, information security and technology corporation, produces military and rotary-wing aircraft to all five branches of the American armed forces.

The Israeli Air Force (IAF) will replace the previously used “Yasur” helicopters with the CH-53K. The helicopter production process for the IAF is slated to begin in the coming months.

Israel is the second country – following the US – that will use the most advanced heavy-lift transport helicopter of its kind in the world, said a statement TV7 obtained from the IMoD Spokesperson.

DG Eshel was accompanied on his visit to Connecticut by the Head of the IMoD Procurement Mission Brig. Gen. (Res.) Michel Ben Baruch, where they met with the President of Sikorsky Paul Lemmo and Lockheed Martin Israel Chief Executive Brig. Gen. (Res.) Joshua (Shiki) Shani.

The teams discussed the project’s progress and spoke about the cooperation with Israeli defense industries.