South Korea donates six MD500 Defenders to Kenya for UN peacekeeping missions

Roberto Chiartano /

South Korea has donated six retired McDonnell Douglas MD 500 Defender helicopters to Kenya for United Nations peacekeeping missions.

The light attack helicopters were previously used by the Republic of Korea (ROK) Army, and are the first batch of 16 helicopters that South Korea pledged to supply during the UN peacekeeping forum hosted by Seoul in 2021.

“The government will closely cooperate with the US and UN  to complete the donation of the remaining 10 helicopters and expand contribution to the global peace and security, including the UN peacekeeping operations,” the South Korean Defense Ministry said in a statement seen by local South Korean media.

Four helicopter accidents took place in Africa in January 2024 alone. Two of those involved helicopters on UN peacekeeping missions. 

On January 10, 2024, a UN helicopter was captured by terror group Al-Shabaab after it was forced to make an emergency landing in the central Galguduud area in Somalia

A Sri Lankan Air Force (SLAF) Mil Mi-17 helicopter on a UN peacekeeping mission crash-landed in the Central African Republic on January 12, 2024, due to adverse weather conditions.

On January 18, 2024, An Ethiopian Airlines De Havilland Canada Dash 8 (DHC-8-400) skidded off a runway during landing at Alula Aba Nega Airport (MQX), but no injuries or fatalities were recorded.

On January 19, 2024, the pilot of a Jetways Airlines Fokker 50 was killed when the cargo plane crashed on landing at Eelbarde Airstrip in Somalia.

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