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Indonesia orders 11 AS565 Panther helos for Navy

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The AS565 Panther. An Airbus Helicopters/Marine Nationale photo

JAKARTA (BNS): To enhance its Navy's anti-submarine warefare capabilities, Indonesia has placed order for a total of 11 AS565 MBe Panther helicopters with Airbus Helicopters.

The deal was annouced at the ongoing Indo Defence 2014 international exhibition in Jakarta on Wednesday.

Scheduled for delivery within three years, the AS565 MBe helicopters will be supplied by Airbus Helicopters to PT Dirgantara Indonesia.

Through the strategic industrial agreement between these two partners, PT Dirgantara Indonesia will be outfitting the rotorcraft in-country with mission equipment before delivery to the Indonesian Navy.

The mission equipment include the Helicopter Long-Range Active Sonar (HELRAS) dipping sonar and torpedo launching system -- providing a truly effective mission system for operations from land bases and ships, Airbus Helicopters said.

"The Panther now becomes one of the world's most capable light/medium anti-submarine warfare platforms, with an advanced ASW suite and the capability to operate from corvettes or small frigates," said Philippe Monteux, Head of Region South East Asia & Pacific at Airbus Helicopters.

The Indoensian armed forces are already operating a wide range of Airbus Helicopters rotorcraft, including the light EC120 Colibris for training; the Fennecs and BO-105 for light attack missions; the Panthers for anti-submarine warfare missions; and the Pumas and Super Pumas operated by the Air Force which will also receive the EC725 for combat search and rescue missions soon.

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