The US on Monday delivered to the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) a third Cessna 208B Caravan turboprop aircraft (L-403) capable of launching AGM-114 Hellfire laser-guided missiles, as part of the US efforts to strengthen the Lebanese Army, Lebanese and European media outlets reported.
“This Cessna that we see here today will be equipped with Hellfire missiles and a day-time/night-time targeting system,” US Ambassador Elizabeth Richard said at a ceremony in a Beirut Air Base. “It will help the LAF support ground troops, combat extremist groups, and keep Lebanon’s borders secure.”
According to the US Embassy in Beirut, the Cessnas are part of a $30 million package that includes maintenance support and training.
Lebanon’s army is fighting the Islamic State and al-Qaida’s Syrian branch in border areas. It is not currently engaged in hostilities with terrorist group Hezbollah, located in south Beirut.