The Czech Republic is planning to offer Iraq a number of light attack aircraft and help Baghdad to modernize its helicopter fleet, Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg said, according to a report from the Russian news agency RIA Novosti.
Czech Prime Minister Petr Necas will visit Iraq on May 23-24 to promote closer economic cooperation with Baghdad and sign an agreement on mutual protection of investments.
"The Czech Republic will offer Iraq L-159 combat aircraft (pictured), and we are also ready to take part in the upgrading of Iraqi helicopters," Schwarzenberg said on Monday after a meeting with Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari in Prague.
The single-seat L-159 ALCA is a light multi-role combat aircraft designed for a variety of air-to-air, air-to-ground and reconnaissance missions.
The jet was developed in the late 1990s by Aero Vodochody on the basis of the proven airframe design and aerodynamic configuration of the L39 Albatros and L59 family of combat trainers.
The aircraft is equipped with an advanced multi-mode radar for all-weather, day-and-night missions and can carry a wide range of NATO-standard payloads including air-to-air and air-to-ground missiles and laser guided bombs.
The Czech Defense Ministry announced in January that it planned to sell 36 L-159 ALCAs that the Czech military does not need.
(Source: RIA Novosti)