Two Saudi pilots were killed when their AH-64 Apache attack helicopter crashed in Yemen.
Saudi Arabia’s Interior Ministry said that two Saudi pilots died when their helicopter crashed “due to weather conditions,” though it did not specify where in Yemen the crash occurred.
The Saudi-led coalition fighting Yemen’s Ansar Allah group has deployed AH-64 Apache attack helicopters to Aden, to provide close air support for the Emirati and allied Yemeni forces operating in the south of the country.
The Apache is a twin-engined army attack helicopter developed by McDonnell Douglas (now Boeing). It entered service with the US Army in 1984 and has been exported to Egypt, Greece, Israel, the Netherlands, Japan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the UK.
The US Army has more than 800 Apaches in service, and more than 1,000 have been exported. The Apache was first used in combat in 1989 in the US military action in Panama. It was used in Operation Desert Storm and has supported low intensity and peacekeeping operations worldwide including Turkey, Bosnia and Kosovo.
The US Army awarded a $247m contract to Boeing in October 2010 to start low rate initial production (LRIP) of the AH-64D Apache Block III helicopter. Boeing will produce 51 AH-64D Apache Block III helicopters for the US Army under the LRIP contract. The first AH-64D Apache Block III helicopter was delivered to the US Army in October 2011.