December 9, 2021 (by U.S. Mission Jordan) - Today the Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF), U.S. Air Force (USAF), and the U.S. Embassy in Jordan celebrated the transfer of three C-130 transport aircraft from USAF to RJAF.
Royal Jordanian Air Force C-130H's (#357 & #359) were seen on display at the handover ceremony held in Amman on December 9, 2021. [USAF photo]
The ceremony was attended by JAF Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Major General Yousef Huneiti, RJAF Commander Brigadier General Mohammad Hiyasat, and RJAF Airlift Wing Commander Colonel Emad Bazadough.
For the United States, Ambassador Henry T. Wooster, USAF Regional Director for Security Assistance Brigadier General Todd Dozier, and U.S. Embassy Defense Attaché Colonel David Kobs attended. RJAF has received two of the C-130 aircraft since September, with the third scheduled for delivery in January.
The transfer of these mission-ready aircraft comes as part of a U.S. Congressional mandate to cap the size of the USAF C-130 fleet. The C-130 Ramp-to-Ramp (R2R) transfer program is the first USAF program to transfer fully active and functional assets to key security partners around the world. R2R delivered its first aircraft in April 2021, and to date has delivered eight of a projected thirty aircraft globally.
“This donation of advanced aircraft represents the commitment of the United States to build strong capabilities of our Jordanian partners to respond immediately to any situation, whether it is a natural disaster, humanitarian crisis, or operational mission,” Ambassador Wooster noted in his remarks. The Commander of the Royal Jordanian Air Force, Brigadier General Mohammad Hiyasat, thanked the friendly American side for their continuous support to the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in all fields, especially the military ones, pointing to the importance of modernizing and developing the C-130 transport squadron. He added that receiving these planes and other equipment is an indication of the depth of U.S.-Jordanian relations.
The transfer of the USAF C-130 aircraft boosts RJAF's fixed-wing tactical airlift capability by nearly 50% and saves RJAF approximately $30 million in equipment renovation costs. The three aircraft have received recent equipment updates and upgraded interoperable avionics and are being integrated now into the RJAF fleet. RJAF has been flying C-130s for over 50 years as a key component of its transport fleet. The C-130 fleet supports the Jordanian Armed Forces through airdropping equipment, paratroopers, and cargo, but also non-military roles including support for disaster relief, humanitarian missions, and medical evacuation missions. Last year, within days of the tragic explosion in Beirut, Jordanian C-130s were in the air delivering essential supplies to assist the Lebanese people. The RJAF Airlift Wing often deploys C-130s and Jordanian troops in support of UN and coalition operations in Africa and other regions.
In follow up to the C-130 transfer, the USAF Mobile Training Team will provide basic and advanced training of Jordanian aircrew and maintenance crews, in line with the U.S. vision to provide a total package approach to capacity building for key security partners.