The Sri Lanka Air Force
) is the air arm
and the youngest of the Sri Lanka Armed Forces
. It was founded in 1951 as the Royal Ceylon Air Force
) with the assistance of the Royal Air Force
(RAF). The SLAF played a major role throughout the Sri Lankan Civil War
. The SLAF operates more than 160 aircraft and has a projected trained strength of 27,400 airmen and 1,300 officers, who are from both regular and reserve service. The Sri Lanka Air Force has expanded to specialize mainly in providing air-support to ground forces, troop landing, and carrying out air strikes on rebel-held areas in the Northern and Eastern theatres, but is also capable of high- and low-level air defence.
The Commander of the Air Force
is the professional head of the Sri Lanka Air Force.
The mission statement
of the Sri Lanka Air Force is
In its early years, the air force was engaged primarily in immigration patrol, with occasional assistance in emergency relief. During the insurgency of 1971, the air force played a major role in restoring internal order; in addition to providing transport of supplies and troops, it participated in assaults against insurgent strongholds. Following the ethnic rioting of 1983, the air force was placed on permanent active status and participated in counter-insurgency activities and air strikes on the rebel-controlled areas of the Northern and Eastern Provinces.
Early administration and training was carried out by RAF... Read More