France retires its final Dassault Mirage 2000Cs

France has retired its final Dassault Mirage 2000Cs after almost four decades of service. Babak Taghvaee reports from Orange-Caritat and the EC 2/5 Ile De France disbandment ceremony

The final nine Dassault Mirage 2000Cs in service with the Armée de l'air et de l'espace (AAF; French Air and Space Force) were retired during a ceremony at Base aérienne 115 Orange-Caritat on June 23 in which Escadron de Chasse (EC, fighter squadron) 2/5 Ile-de-France was temporarily disbanded. Maintaining the air arm’s long tradition, an aircraft from each of France’s fighter squadrons attended the event.

Captain Simon (left) and Captain Robin piloted the Gusto 1 and 2 Mirage 2000C RDIs during the disbandment ceremony
Babak Taghvaee
Two Mirage 2000Cs
The Gusto Tactical Display Team performs for the last time during the EC 2/5 ceremony on June 23
Babak Taghvaee

During their final years of service, the Mirage 2000Cs had – in addition to their quick reaction alert role – been widely used for pilot training, with a priority being given to ensuring that Mirage 2000B instructors remained mission-ready while not posted to frontline squadrons. For this reason, the Mirage 2000Cs of EC 2/5 frequently participated in national and international exercises during 2021.

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