Serving in the shadows

The Jandarma Havacılık Komutanliği (Gendarmerie Aviation Command) is one of Turkey’s most elusive air arms. Marco Dijkshoorn assesses its assets, capabilities and recent developments.

Turkish Gendarmerie

The S-70A Black Hawk is the mainstay of the Jandarma Özel Harekat (Gendarmerie Special Operation Forces). The sensor suite – including a forwardlooking infrared – is optimised for night operations, with a colour scheme to match. All photos Marco Dijkshoorn
A line-up at Ankara-Güvercinlik of three of the helicopter types used by the Jandarma: the Mi-17-1V ‘Hip-H’ (the white, blue and red example is used as a VIP transport), the Agusta-Bell AB205 ‘Huey’ and the S-70A Black Hawk. Although unconfirmed, it seems likely that the Gendarmerie unit at Güvercinlik will move to Aydin-Çildir or Isparta/Süleyman Demirel in future.

The Jandarma Havacılık Komutanlığı answers to the Jandarma Genel Komutanliği (Gendarmerie General Command), Turkey’s militarised internal security force. Operating mostly in rural areas in a paramilitary role, its assets are scattered widely around the country and rarely seen.

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