Three Ukrainian-built Antonov-32 transport aircraft belonging to the Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) which were sent to Ukraine for overhaul purposes, will be brought back to the country on Friday.
SLAF Spokesman Group Captain Dushan Wijesinghe said the three AN-32B aircraft belonging to the Sri Lanka Air Force were sent to Ukraine in August last year to undergo repairs and a life extension.
He said a SLAF team had also left for Ukraine to assist and supervise the process.
SE SSFTIF Ukrinmash together with SE Аntonov and SE 410 CA Plant signed the contract to undergo repairs, with Sri Lanka's Ministry of Defense last year.
Prior to this, six Ukrainian aviation engineers visited Sri Lanka in May 2020 to inspect the aircraft and recommend a complete overhaul.
The airforce spokesman said the SLAF pilots had already left Ukraine with the AN-32B aircraft and will land in Sri Lanka on Friday.
AN 32B was inducted to the SLAF in 1995 to replace the Avro HS 748 aircraft. SLAF purchased four AN 32B aircraft and all of them were grounded. Sri Lanka is also expecting to send the remaining AN-32 to Ukraine for similar overhauling.(Darshana Sanjeewa Balasuriya)