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United Nations peacekeepers in Africa are expanding the use of drones to improve force protection and better secure the civilian communities in conflict areas. The UN is expected to select a supplier for a larger MALE drone to succeed the Falco UAVs operating in the Democratic Republic of Congo since 2013. Such drones will soon launch operations from two bases in Mali, in support of UN operations in the Sahara.
The German forces will soon deploy Heron 1 Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) to Mali. Airbus Defense and Space announced yesterday it had signed a contract with the German Defence Procurement Agency (BAAInBw) to provide such surveillance drones in support of the Bundeswehr missions in Africa.