24 May 2017

News Report: Trump's Budget Requests Extra $700Mln for Afghanistan Air Force Program

Afghan A-29 Super Tucano Ground Attack Aircraft
President Donald Trump's 2018 budget requests over $700 million for Afghanistan Air Force program, the White House proposal revealed on Tuesday.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Trump's 2018 budget plan for the Department of Defense contains more that $700 million for the Afghan forces’ air lift program

"[The budget plan] includes over $700 million for the program to address aviation lift and aerial fires capability gaps and transition from Russian-manufactured to US-manufactured rotary wing assets," the document released on Tuesday stated.

On May 10, US Central Command (CENTCOM) commander Gen. Joseph Votel told the Senate Armed Service Committee that Russian-made Mi-17 helicopter is both undersized and proving to be more expensive and difficult to sustain than originally envisioned.

The Defense Department explained that the $700-million request is an addition to the $814 million proposed in fiscal year 2017 Afghanistan Security Forces Fund (ASFF) document to begin transitioning the Afghan aviation fleet.

The ASFF plan included 53 UH-60 helicopters, 30 armed MD-530F helicopters, six A-29 attack aircraft and five AC-208s.

This story first appeared on Sputnik & is reposted here with permission.