ISRAEL HAS ordered seven Leonardo AW119Kx Koala helicopters to replace the Israeli Air Force (IAF) Flight Academy’s current Bell 206 Saifan (JetRanger) training helicopters. The IAF announced the deal on February 17, saying that the contract had been signed last Thursday, February 14.
The agreement for the new advanced military training helicopters was signed between Israel’s Ministry of Defence and the Italian Defence Ministry. As part of the deal, the Italian Defence Ministry will purchase Israeli military technology of an equivalent value. The AW119Kx will enter service with the Flight Academy at Hatzerim Air Base, progressively replacing the IAF’s current Saifans, which were purchased in 1970.