Visit of the Chief of the Air and Space Army Logistics Support Command to the facilities of the 'Escole Aéronautique Commandant Lemaitre' at the Blaise Diagne International Airport. This is where the 'Marfil' Tactical Air Detachment (DAT) operates from. Lieutenant General José Luis Pardo Jario, has known the logistic situation of the detachment and has been interested in its needs and in the possible improvements to be implemented.
During the visit, the Force Commander detailed the peculiarities of the mission and the area where it operates. Subsequently, the general visited each of the sections that make up the detachment, where their respective managers were able to explain the constraints they face in their daily work.
In addition, the general wanted to convey to the members of the 39th contingent the importance of the work carried out in the mission, as well as the absolute priority for the Air and Space Army of the logistical needs of deployments in the area of operations.
DAT Marfil belogs to the Air and Space Army and is part of the A/M Operation. Its deployment base is the 'Escale Aéronautique Commandant Lemaitre', located in the facilities of the French Elements in Senegal (EFS) within the Blaise Diagne International Airport.
Under the operational command of MOPS, this operation is tasked with intra-theater tactical and logistical airlift missions, as well as in-flight refueling (if deployed assets permit) in support of France in its fight against terrorism within the framework of Operation Barkhane.
In addition, the DAT Marfil supports the United Nations missions MINUSMA and MINUSCA, focused on the stabilization of Mali and Central Africa, respectively, as well as the European Union missions EUTM RCA and EUTM Mali, supporting the training and education of the respective armed forces and the Joint Force G4 Sahel.
The Detachment is composed of 70 military personnel from different Air and Space Army units, mostly personnel from the 35th Wing, the Air Deployment Support Squadron (EADA) and the Mobile Air Control Group (GRUMOCA). It operates with two Airbus C295 (T-21) aircraft belonging to the 35th Wing of the Getafe Air Base. The mission's Joint Force Air Component Command (JFACC), located in Lyon (France), is in charge of scheduling the missions of the two Spanish aircraft, which operate H24 in the Joint Operations Area (JOA).
This Detachment is an example of the capabilities provided by the Spanish Armed Forces, in this case through the Spanish Air and Space Army, to other Armed Forces, where availability and operability are paramount. The means operate in a sub-Saharan environment, which often results in landings in unprepared fields and in extreme weather conditions of high temperatures and heavy rain, due to frequent seasonal storms. These factors, together with the extensive area of operations where the missions are performed, are a constant challenge for the air crews of the Detachment.
After more than nine years of operation, the DAT Marfil is consolidated as an exemplary example of our Armed Forces, deployed wherever national interests require it, strengthening the State's foreign action in its commitment to peace and international security.