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The Israeli Air Force (IAF) has received an additional C-130J Super Hercules tactical transport aircraft from the US.

Landed in Nevatim Airbase, the new C-130J Shimshon is equipped with self-defence systems to offer enhanced aerial support.

The aircraft has joined with the IAF’s Elephants squadron, the first C-130J squadron in the air force to operate the advanced transport plane.

Elephants squadron commander lieutenant colonel Uri said: "The new aircraft brings new capabilities with it which we didn’t possess before.

"The plane is installed with new, unique systems to help us carry out our missions in the best and safest way."

Established in January last year, IAF’s Elephants squadron is currently building up flight teams and preparing for operational activation.

In addition, the existing C-130Js participated in major aerial-ground training exercises, demonstrating their capabilities.

"The plane is installed with new, unique systems to help us carry out our missions in the best and safest way."

Uri added: "We have developed new training programs and flight methods, established a new technical division and prepared for an operational review that was held last March.

"Another significant event was the assistance provided in Nepal, following the earthquake in the region, two C-130Js were flown to the centre of the disaster, carrying IDF aid mission."

The IAF ordered three C-130J-30 aircraft under US foreign military sales (FMS) programmes between 2010 and 2011.

The new aircraft are aimed to replace its ageing C-130E Hercules fleet, which was acquired in the 1970s.


Image: IAF’s new C-130J features self-defence systems to improve aerial support provided for ground and aerial units. Photo: courtesy of Israeli Air Force.