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TAI upgraded F-16s arrive in Pakistan

February 26, 2012 (by Asif Shamim) - The first batch of three TAI upgraded F-16 block 15 MLU (Mid Life Upgrade) were delivered to the Pakistan Air Force on Friday.

The aircraft were flown from Ankara, Turkey to PAF Base Shahbaz at Jacobabad according to a PAF spokesman. The aircraft were earlier sent to TAI (Turkish Aerospace Industries) to be refurbished under the Peace Drive II program which started in October 2010.

A ceremony was held to commemorate the delivery of the first batch of upgraded jets, attended by Deputy Chief of Air Staff (Operations), Air Marshal Waseemuddin, and other officials.

Under the programme, TAI is modernising the avionics and structure of the F-16 jets that have been in service with the PAF since 1982-83. The projected completion date for all the upgrades is expected to be September 2014.

Earlier this month, the US delivered the last F-16D block 52 jet and two F-16 block 15 jets that had undergone mid-life upgrades in the US.