U.S. preparing for military operations in South Sudan
May 20, 2014(WASHINGTON) — The U.S. military is preparing for operations in South Sudan.
The Defense Department has awarded an $8.5 million contract to an American firm to provide helicopter services for the U.S. Army.
The Pentagon said the services by AAR Airlift Group would enable the Army to operate in South Sudan and neighboring states.
“Funds will be obligated on individual task orders and are operations and maintenance, Army funds,” the Pentagon said.
In a statement on May 16, the Pentagon said AAR would also provide services for Uganda, Central Africa Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The statement said AAR, based in Palm Bay, Fla., would work for the U.S. Transportation Command in a contract expected to be completed in April 2015.
Officials said the U.S. military has been ordered to prepare for
rapid-response missions in South Sudan and central Africa amid civil war in
Juba. They said U.S. helicopters helped transport American embassy staffers
out of Juba during the height of the civil war in early 2014.
AAR has been providing expeditionary aviation services for the U.S.
military around the Middle East. The company cited operations in Iraq,
Jordan and Kuwait.