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US delivers two Bell 412 EP helicopters to Pakistan Army

Bell 412EP medium-weight multi-purpose helicopter.

ISLAMABAD (PTI): The US Tuesday delivered two enhanced-performance utility transport Bell helicopters to the Pakistan Army to boost its counter-insurgency efforts.

Brig Gen Michael Nagata handed over the Bell 412 EP helicopters to Brig Tippu Karim, commander of the 101 Army Aviation unit, during a signing ceremony at Qasim army airbase near Rawalpindi.

The US purchased the two enhanced-performance utility transport helicopters, valued at USD 24 million to support Pakistan's counter-insurgency operations.

The US also provided spare parts, special tools and other equipment worth USD 20 million to support the aircraft, said a statement from the American embassy.

"The purchase of the aircraft demonstrates the United States' full commitment to a stable, long-term strategic partnership with Pakistan, one based on shared interests and mutual respect that will continue to expand and deepen in future years," Brig Gen Nagata said during the ceremony.

During the past three years, US civilian and security assistance to Pakistan has totalled more than four billion dollars.

Specific security assistance includes 14 F-16 fighters, ten Mi-17 helicopters, more than 450 vehicles for the paramilitary Frontier Corps, hundreds of night vision goggles, day and night scopes, radios, and thousands of protective vests and first-aid items.

In addition, the US funded and provided training for over 370 Pakistani military officers in a wide range of leadership and development programmes covering topics like counter-terrorism, intelligence and military law.

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