Pave Hawks’ Djibouti Work-Up

Air Force HH-60G Pave Hawks deployed to Djibouti exercised with French aircraft from the carrier Charles de Gaulle during a stop-over en route to the Persian Gulf to join operations against ISIS. “This is the first significant stop that we’ve made, conducting a live firing exercise in coordination with the US, preparing the French [Aeronavale] pilots for upcoming operations,” said British exchange pilot Lt. Cmdr. Ian Sloan in a Feb. 23 release. The Pave Hawks coordinated with French Rafale fighter aircraft and French and US Marine Corps joint terminal attack controllers during the five-day work-up, Jan. 31 to Feb. 4. Air Force Reserve Command airmen of the 303rd Expeditionary Rescue Squadron are currently deployed to Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, providing personnel recovery to Combined Joint Task Force-Horn of Africa, according to a release. France is additionally contributing AWACS, aerial refueling, maritime patrol, and land-based strike aircraft to operations over Iraq, making it a leading international contributor to the allied campaign.