Georgian Air Force

The Georgian Air Force (Georgian: საქართველოს საჰაერო ძალები, sak’art’velos sahaero dzalebi) is the air force of the Defense Forces of Georgia. It was established as part of the Georgian Armed Forces in 1992 and merged into Army Air Section in 2010. As part of reforms in the Georgian military, the Air Force was reestablished as a separate branch of the Defense Forces in 2016.[1]

Georgian Air Force
საქართველოს სამხედრო-საჰაერო ძალები
Georgian Air Force emblem.svg
Coat of arms of the Georgian Air Force
Founded1992; 29 years ago (1992)
Country Georgia
TypeAir force
RoleAerial warfare
Size2,971 personnel
76 aircraft
Part ofGeorgian Defence Forces
HeadquartersAlekseevka, Tbilisi
Engagements
Commanders
Commander-in-ChiefPresident Salome Zourabichvili
Insignia
RoundelRoundel of Georgia.svg Roundel of Georgia – Low Visibility.svg
FlagGeorgian Air Force and Air Defense Command flag (2018).png

HistoryEdit

Founding and abolitionEdit

The Georgian Air Force and Air Defense Division was established on January 1, 1992. On August 18, 1998, the two divisions were unified in a joint command structure and renamed the Georgian Air Force.[2]

The first combat flight was conducted by Izani Tsertsvadze and Valeri Nakopia on September 19, 1992, during the separatist war in Abkhazia. This date was later designated as the Georgian Air Force Day.[2]

In 2010, the Georgian Air Force was abolished as a separate branch and incorporated into the Georgian Land Forces as Air and Air Defense sections.[3]

Reestablishment and modernizationEdit

The Georgian Air Force was formally re-established in 2016 but all fixed wing aircraft were left abandoned till 2020. Under the leadership of Georgian Minister of Defense Irakli Garibashvili the Air Force was re-prioritized and aircraft owned by the Georgian Air Force are being modernized and re-serviced after they were left abandoned for 4 years. The Minister of Defense also announced plans to acquire strike drones to increase Georgia's combat readiness.[4]

RanksEdit

Commissioned officersEdit

Georgian armed forces O-1 O-2 O-3 O-4 O-5 O-6 O-7 O-8 O-9 O-10 0-11
Insignia                      
Title Second lieutenant Lieutenant First lieutenant Captain Major Lieutenant colonel Colonel Brigadier general Major general Lieutenant general General
Abbreviation 2LT LT 1LT CPT MAJ LTC COL BG MG LTG GEN
NATO code OF-1 OF-2 OF-3 OF-4 OF-5 OF-6 OF-7 OF-8 OF-9

Mission and objectivesEdit

The objectives of the Georgian Air Force are defined as follows:

  • Warfare and mobilization readiness of the Air Forces sub-units
  • Protection of sovereignty and control of the air space of Georgia
  • The fight against air terrorism
  • Participate in the fight against terrorism on land and at sea
  • Air defence of state entities and troops
  • Destruction of land and naval targets at the enemy's front line and tactical inmost. Providing air support for friendly land and naval forces
  • Participation in collective and multinational exercises.

Functions of the Georgian Air Forces:

  • Troop and cargo transportation
  • Search and rescue of downed aircraft and pilots
  • MEDEVAC
  • Informing the leadership of the Air Force and the Army about enemy air assaults
  • Destruction of enemy manpower, land and naval targets
  • Air forces landing
  • Aerial reconnaissance

The two major airfields are located near Tbilisi at Vaziani and Marneuli.

Current inventoryEdit

 
A Georgian Mi-24 in flight
 
A Georgian Su-25KM in flight
Aircraft Origin Type Variant In service Notes
Fixed Wing
Sukhoi Su-25 Georgia CAS Su-25KM/Su-25UB 12 Being restored to airworthy condition.
Antonov An-28 Ukraine Transport 2 Being restored to airworthy condition.
Antonov An-2 Ukraine Transport 10 Being restored to airworthy condition.
Helicopters
Mil Mi-8/17 Soviet Union Utility Mi-8/17 21 Being restored to airworthy condition.
Mil Mi-14 Soviet Union ASW 1 Unknown condition.
Mil Mi-24 Russia Attack / Utility Mi-24P/Mi-24D/Mi-35P 5 Being restored to airworthy condition.
Bell UH-1 United States Utility UH-1H 24 Being restored to airworthy condition.
Trainer Aircraft
Aero L-39 Czech Republic Trainer / Attack Aero L-39C 7 Being restored to airworthy condition.
Yak-52 Soviet Union Trainer 10 Unknown condition.
UAV
Elbit Hermes 450 Israel UAV 15

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "საქართველოს თავდაცვის შესახებ" [On Defense of Georgia]. Law No. 1030 of 31 October 2018 (in Georgian).
  2. ^ a b Defence Today 27: 1. September 2009. Accessed February 10, 2012.
  3. ^ Structure of Land Forces Archived 2013-11-05 at the Wayback Machine. Ministry of Defense of Georgia. Accessed on February 10, 2012.
  4. ^ "ავიაციის პარკის განახლების სამუშაოები აქტიურად მიმდინარეობს - YouTube". www.youtube.com. Retrieved 2021-01-13.