Philippines Receives Two T129 ATAK Helicopters From Turkey

The Philippine Air Force (PAF) has received two T129 ATAK helicopters from Turkey at the 15th Strike Wing headquarters in Sangley Point, Cavite.

The two aircraft will be used alongside the PAF’s armed light observation and transport helicopters, enhancing the force’s combat operational capability and addressing capability gaps in urban warfare.

The units are the fifth and sixth attack helicopters acquired in a $280-million deal between Turkey and the Philippines. Its sister aircraft were the first helicopters Ankara delivered to a foreign country.

The T129 ATAK fleet deal is part of the Horizon 2 phase of the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ Modernization Program, a 300 billion Philippine peso ($5.2 billion) acquisition project to update the country’s military posture.

The T-129 ATAK aircraft is a twin-engine attack helicopter designed for armed reconnaissance in hot and high environments and day and night missions.

Based on Leonardo’s A129 Mangusta helicopter, the variant is fitted with avionics and weapon systems developed by Turkish Aerospace industries. Its armaments include an M197 20 mm three-barrel rotary cannon, eight 160 mm anti-tank guided missiles, and up to four pods of unguided rocket systems.

Its other operators include its developer country, Turkey, and Nigeria, which ordered six T-129s in 2022.

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