On the premises of the "Escale Aéronautique Commandant Lemaître" at the Blaise Diagne International Airport, from where the Ivory Airmobile Detachment operates, almost a hundred children from the Mère Paule Lapique School enjoyed a very special day with the 39th Contingent.
Among the activities that they were carried out during the visit were the "Military Obstacle Course", designed especially for them, and the "simulated parachuting" from one of our planes. Since it was a day in which children are the main characters, all the detachment staff wanted to participate and make them spend a lovely evening.
Interaction activities with civilians in the surrounding areas make possible daily work and help establish important ties between the Spanish Armed Forces and locals. Respect for their beliefs, traditions, and customs are the foundations on which this relationship of trust is built.
Marfil TAD, of the Air and Space Army, is part of the A/M Operation. Its deployment base is the "Escale Aéronautique Commandant Lemaître", located on the premises of the French Elements in Senegal (EFS) at Blaise Diagne International Airport.
Under the Operations Command (MOPS), this operation is tasked with intra-theatre tactical airlift and logistics missions, as well as in-flight refuelling (if deployed assets permit) in support of France in its fight against terrorism.
In addition, the TAD Ivory Coast supports the UN missions MINUSMA and MINUSCA, focused on the stabilisation 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 G4 Sahel Joint Force.
The Detachment is made up of 70 military personnel from different Air and Space Army units, mostly personnel from the 35th Wing, the Air Deployment Support Squadron (ADSS) and the Mobile Air Control Group (MACG). 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 responsible for 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 Air and Space Army, to other Armed Forces, where availability and operability are paramount. The resources operate in a sub-Saharan environment, which often means landing in unprepared fields and in extreme weather conditions of high temperatures and heavy rain, due to frequent seasonal storms. These factors, coupled with the large area of operations where missions are conducted, are a constant challenge for the Detachment's aircrews.
After more than nine years of operation, the Marfil TAD is consolidated as an exemplary example of our Armed Forces, deployed wherever national interests are required, strengthening the State's external action in its commitment to international peace and security.