Procurement: Free, With Strings


September 18, 2010: Switzerland is donating ten French made Alouette III helicopters to Pakistan . Built in the 1980s, Switzerland took them out of service last year. The Alouette III is a 2.1 ton helicopter that seats seven. It can be armed with a machine-gun and rockets, but Pakistan has promised not to do that, in return for receiving the helicopters for free. Switzerland is having the helicopters airlifted to Pakistan. Max speed of the Alouette III is 210 kilometers an hour. Endurance is 2.5 hours and range is 290 kilometers. The Swiss expect the helicopters to be immediately used for the massive floods that Pakistan is still suffering from. Helicopters are often the only way to reach people cut off by the flood waters. After that, the Alouette IIIs are good for another 5-10 years' service.




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