Central Asia: March 11, 2002


Six Mirage 2000-D planes and two C-135 aircraft (for in flight refueling) arrived in Manas, Central Asia, at the end of February, after experiencing a long delay in deployment. The French fighter planes carried out "two duty missions in the zone" on the 2nd and again on the 3rd, in support of "Operation Anaconda". According to AFP, these aircraft had not previously participated in the bombings carried out in the mountainous region of Arma and were on their first operational missions. Two more missions on the 4th were on standby for bombing runs. The newspaper Le Monde reported 9 March that Super-Etendard and Mirage 2000 jets had made about 20 sorties on more than a dozen targets, sometimes dropping 250-kilogram (550-pound) laser-guided bombs.- Adam Geibel


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