By Tom Westcott
Tripoli, 11 June 2013:
The Libyan government wants to purchase two C-130J-30 Super Hercules from the US in a deal which, including spare parts and logistical support and training, is worth over half a billion dollars.
The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), which is part of the US Department of Defense, said yesterday that Libya had requested the aircraft. The potential sale has been announced in line with US legislation, but it does not mean it will definitely go ahead.
The package sought by Libya includes two C-130J-30 aircraft, each powered by four Rolls Royce AE 2100D3 turboprop engines, as well as two spare power units. Personnel training, US government and contractor engineering, and technical and logistic support services are also part of the proposed deal. If the sale goes ahead, the main contractor will be Lockheed Martin-Aerospace, one of the world’s largest defence contractors.
The DSCA estimates that the cost of the total package will be $588 million.
The sale of the Super Hercules will increase Libya’s capability and capacity in the area of security, the DSCA said in a statement. It added that the aircraft should assist the country: “With border security, the interdiction of known terrorist elements, and rapid reaction to internal security threats.”
The UN partially lifted its arms embargo on Libya in March this year, with UN resolution 2095, allowing the country to purchase: “Supplies of non-lethal military equipment intended solely for humanitarian or protective use, and related technical assistance or training.”
Libya intends to use the new aircraft primarily to move supplies and people internally, according to the DSCA, as well as supporting regional peacekeeping and humanitarian operations.