Slovenia receives first C-27J Spartan transport aircraft

On December 20, 2023, the Slovenian Armed Forces welcomed the first of two C-27J Spartan transport aircraft providing a tactical transport capability for military and disaster relief missions.

During a handover ceremony at Cerklje ob Krki air base, Slovenia’s Defence Minister Marjan Šarec said that the Slovenian Armed Forces are now on the path of development and modernisation. “If we want to put our Armed Forces in the place it belongs to, we must invest in research and development and engage Slovenian know-how,” he said. “In order to maintain uninterrupted airworthiness, we need to have at least two transport aircraft at our disposal to perform both military and humanitarian tasks,” he added.

With the delivery of the C-27J Spartan aircraft, the Slovenian Armed Forces are filling gaps in tactical airlift capability that among others became apparent during response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Slovenian military will employ the aircraft for personnel and cargo transport, paradrop operations, medical evacuation and also fire fighting making the aircraft an important enabler for the armed forces. For these purposes, the C-27J will be fitted with a passenger transport module and a firefighting module in the form of an eight-tonne water tank.

“We have already trained two crews to execute most of the missions the C-27J can perform, and training will continue at Maribor airport from January 15 on as the runway at Cerklje ob Krki is awaiting renovation,” said Colonel Janez Gaube, commander of Slovenia’s 15th Military Aviation Wing.

The addition of eventually two C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft to the Slovenian Armed Forces inventory represents a major upgrade capability-wise. The state-of-the-art transport plane is widely used by Allies Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Lithuania, Romania and Slovakia and Partner air forces which makes it easy to integrate in combined air transport operations.

(Story by Allied Air Command Public Affairs Office based on input provided by the Slovenian Armed Forces)

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