25 July 2017
(IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly)
The Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) has received into service a further two Sikorsky S-70 Black Hawk helicopters to augment the 24 it already fields.
The event, which was announced by the US Embassy in Jordan on 23 July, involved the delivery of helicopters to Jordan aboard a US Air Force (USAF) Boeing C-17 Globemaster III strategic airlifter. The two additional UH-60M-standard platforms are part of a wider batch of 12 such helicopters that are to be delivered to the kingdom by October.
Currently, the RJAF fields a range of Black Hawk variants in a number of roles that include special operations. As noted in Jane’s World Air Forces , the service received the first of three S-70A-11s in 1987; eight UH-60Ls in 2007; two UH-60Ms in 2013; as well as three S-70i helicopters and eight UH-60As in 2015.
The build-up of the RJAF’s Black Hawk inventory is geared at reinforcing the defence of border security against Islamic State forces in neighbouring Syria and Iraq, and to enable the Royal Jordanian Army’s Quick Reaction Forces to immediately deploy forces anywhere in the country.
Besides the Black Hawk in general and the UH-60M in particular, the RJAF’s rotary-winged inventory comprises the Bell AH-1 Cobra; MD Helicopters Inc MD 500 and 530F; Airbus Helicopters Ecureuil, Super Puma and EC635; Agusta Westland AW139; and Robinson R44 Raven II. The Royal Jordanian Army does not operate helicopters.