Pakistan returns five helicopters to US

Reports are emerging that Pakistan has returned five helicopters to the US, according to VOA Urdu.

The US gave Pakistan nine helicopters some 15 years ago to help monitor the Afghan border. Pakistan returned four previously, while the remaining five helicopters were sent back on a special plane on Monday.

The helicopters were used in counter-narcotics operations.

According to reports, the helicopters were handed over to Pakistan under a ‘return or buy’ agreement.

Officially, no explanation was provided, but sources said Pakistan decided to return the helicopters in favour of Cessna aircraft.

Security analyst Mahmood Shah said the withdrawal of these helicopters will have no effect on counter-terrorism efforts.

Talking to Voice of America on Tuesday, he said that it was not a gunship helicopter, but an anti-drug chopper provided to the ANF.

“It does not make any difference to Pakistan. Now that the area is in our control, no helicopters are needed.”

Pakistan used to be largely dependent on the US for its defence equipment needs, but in recent years, due to ongoing pressure in bilateral relations, Pakistan has been acquiring military hardware from other countries.

In addition to the purchase of fighter helicopters with Russia, Pakistan is also considering purchasing modern combat helicopters from Turkey.

This article originally appeared on UrduVOA

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