The Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) has recently become an operator of the Russian-made Mil Mi-28N attack helicopter, making a significant addition to its diverse aerial fleet.
Details of Uganda’s acquisition of the Mi-28N attack helicopters remain undisclosed. However, local media reports suggest that at least three Mi-28s were sighted at Entebbe Air Base on June 15, coinciding with a visit by Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni.
In late July 2023, the Ugandan Air Force demonstrated the firepower of its new Mi-28 attack helicopters during exercises at the Karama training school. The released footage offers a rare insight into the operational capabilities of these aircraft within the Ugandan military arsenal.
The UPDF, equipped with around a dozen Mi-24/35 attack helicopters, several Mi-8/Mi-17s, AB 206 Jet Rangers, half a dozen Bell 205s, and a couple of Bell 212 helicopters, maintains a versatile and capable airborne force.
The lack of prior knowledge regarding Uganda’s negotiations for the Mi-28 adds an element of mystery to this deal with Russia.
It is noteworthy that the Russians themselves favor the more reliable Ka-52 helicopter, relegating the Mi-28 to secondary tasks during the war in Ukraine.
Despite their secondary role, Russian troops have lost at least 13 Mi-28 helicopters in Ukraine since February 24, 2022.