KMC Airmen return AU troops to Rwanda

***image1***KIGALI, Rwanda – Two U.S. Air Force C-130s returned approximately 80
African Union peacekeepers from the Darfur region of the Sudan Oct. 2.

In addition to returning 200 troops from the Sudan, the 86th Air
Expeditionary Group is also providing airlift to approximately 550 AU
troops to the El-Fashir airstrip in the Darfur region.  This is
the third movement of AU protection troops by the United States in a
year to the Darfur region of the Sudan.

More than 150 Airmen from Ramstein Air Base, Germany, are participating in the airlift mission.
“We are happy to be able to assist the African Union by bringing these
troops home,” said Lt. Col. Jeffrey Renner, 86th AEG commander. “The AU
has limited airlift capability, so we are here to help them with our
aircraft and trained professionals.”

The U.S. airlift is part of NATO’s response to support the AU’s expanded mission with logistics and training.

“The U.S. airlift is part of the larger multinational effort to improve
security and create conditions in which humanitarian assistance can be
more effectively provided to the people of Darfur,” said Maj. Helen
Newell, NATO movement control officer assigned to the AU Darfur
Integrated Task Force. “This U.S. airlift is just one piece of the
international and U.S. government effort to assist the victims of the
humanitarian crisis.”

The U.S. Air Force became involved in the African Union Missions in
Sudan when NATO and the European Union agreed to answer the AU’s April
request for airlift assistance. U.S. European Command tasked U.S. Air
Forces in Europe to provide the aircraft and personnel for this
The AU troops are the first of 200 to be redeployed by the 86th AEG
from Sudan to Rwanda, following approximately six months providing
monitoring and protection services to the troubled area.