In coordination with Itamaraty, Brazilian Ministry of Defense begins mission to repatriate Brazilians in IsraelIn coordination with Itamaraty, Brazilian Ministry of Defense begins mission to repatriate Brazilians in Israel

Brasília (DF) – At an inter-ministerial meeting this Sunday (8), the Ministry of Defense (MD) made six Brazilian Air Force (FAB) aircraft available to the Federal Government to repatriate Brazilians who are in Israel and wish to leave the region. A KC-30 aircraft took off today (8) from Natal Air Base (RN) bound for Rome, Italy, and is awaiting coordination from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MRE). According to the Israeli Prime Minister’s office, the country went to war after recent bombings and ground attacks from the Gaza Strip. Itamaraty estimates that 30 Brazilians live there and another 60 in Ascalão and other locations in the conflict zone.

“Our idea is for this plane to remain in Italy awaiting these final coordinations with the MFA. We have our own military personnel, from our attaché office, at the Israeli embassy and at the other embassies in the region, so that we can make the first arrivals, bring the first Brazilians here from there,” explained the Commander of the Air Force, Air Brigadier Lieutenant Marcelo Kanitz Damasceno.

The inter-ministerial meeting was also attended by the substitute Minister of Itamaraty, Ambassador Maria Laura da Rocha; the Minister of Defense, José Mucio; and the Special Advisor to the Presidency, Ambassador Celso Amorim; among other authorities.

Aircraft – The FAB provided three models of aircraft for the mission. The KC-30 (Airbus A330-200) is the largest aircraft ever operated by the Force. The 233-tonne (maximum weight) giant has capacity for 238 passengers and can carry up to 45 tonnes of payload, as well as flying a distance of 14,500 kilometers.

The KC-390 Millennium, manufactured by Brazil’s Embraer, is the largest military aircraft developed and produced in the southern hemisphere. It can carry around 80 passengers (in the configuration for this mission) and is used for logistical air transport missions, in-flight refueling, in-flight firefighting, aeromedical evacuation, search and rescue, low-altitude navigation, cargo and personnel launches, among others.

The VC-2 (Embraer 190), also made in Brazil, is used for presidential transport and can carry around 40 passengers and fly at speeds of up to 985 kilometers per hour.

Repatriation missions – In recent years, the Armed Forces have carried out four repatriation operations, by air and land, in Turkey, Ukraine, China and Bolivia. Around 5 aircraft and 30 vehicles were used in the missions, which resulted in the rescue of approximately 6,600 people, including Brazilians and foreigners.

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