The Belgian government today decided to provide France's Operation Serval in Mali with airlift and medical evacuation support, as requested by the French government.
Belgian Defense photo
The support will initially consist of two Belgian air force C-130s for strategic and tactical airlift. It will be followed by a detachment with a medicalized version of the A-109 helicopter, with a second helicopter in reserve.
The 75 Belgian military personnel involved will be deployed over the next few days to Abidjan, Ivory Coast, and Bamako, Mali.
Belgium has not sent combat troops to Africa since 10 of its paratroopers were killed in Rwanda in 1994 in the lead up to the genocide there.