This article first appeared in AviationWeek.com.
Two Italian Air Force C-27Js Spartan tactical transport aircraft returned home on Jan. 27 after completing a deployment in Afghanistan which started on Sept. 12th, 2008.
The aircraft have carried out more than 200 operational flying hours, completing 50 missions and transporting 1,500 passengers and 30,000 pounds of cargo. The aircraft, which made up the Task Group Albatros, part of the Joint Air Task Force (JATF) that controls all the Italian air assets in theater, have been employed in a variety of roles, including medevac, cargo and personnel transportation. They have been operating from both the main Kabul airport as well as from regional airport and from tactical strips in support of the four remote PRTs (Provincial Reconstruction Teams) in the Western Regional Command area.
The C-27Js belongs to the Pisa Air Force Base 46th Aerobrigade, which has so far received 10 of the planned 12 C-27Js. The last two aircraft are to be delivered before the end of the year.
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