Kazakh Air Defense Forces


Kazakh Air Defence Forces
Kazakh: Qazaqstan Äwe qorğanısı küşteri
Russian: Силы воздушной обороны Республики Казахстан
Coa vvsrk.svg
Emblem of the Kazakh Air Defence Forces
Founded1 June 1998; 23 years ago (1998-06-01)
Country Kazakhstan
TypeAir force
RoleAerial warfare
Aerial defence
Size12,000 airman [1]
Part ofKazakh Armed Forces
Anniversaries7 May (Defender of the Fatherland Day)
18 August (Aviation Day)
Supreme Commander-in-ChiefPresident Kassym-Jomart Tokayev
Commander of the Air ForceLieutenant General Nurlan Ormanbetov
RoundelRoundel of Kazakhstan.svg
FlagFlag of Kazakhstan Air Force.svg
Aircraft flown
AttackSu-24, Su-25, MiG-27
FighterMiG-23, MiG-29, Su-27, Su-30
HelicopterMil Mi-8, Mil Mi-17, Mil Mi-26, Bell UH-1, Eurocopter EC145
Attack helicopterMil Mi-24, Mil Mi-35
ReconnaissanceCAIG Wing Loong, Aeronautics Defense Orbiter, Elbit Hermes 90, Elbit Hermes 450, Elbit Skylark
TrainerAero L-39, Zlín Z 42
TransportAn-12, An-24, An-26, An-72, An-74, EADS CASA C-295, Boeing 757, Shaanxi Y-8

The Kazakh Air Defense Forces (Kazakh: Latin script: Qazaqstan Äwe qorğanısı küşteri, Russian: Силы воздушной обороны) is the aviation warfare branch of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan. Their tasks include the ensurance of the protection of the airspace of the republic as well as the fulfillment of combat missions for air support of other branches of the armed forces. The official holiday of the air forces is Aviation Day on August 18.

The Talgat Bigeldinov Military Institute of the Air Defence Forces serves as the only educational service of the air force, having trained cadets from foreign countries including Hungary, Kyrgyzstan and Afghanistan.[2][3][4]


Soviet era

In the first formation of the Central Asian Military District, it operated a Soviet Air Force district branch led by Major General M.P. Kharitonov. It operated in the early to mid-40s during the Second World War, and consisted of air brigades based on the territory of the Kazakh SSR.[5] The 73rd Air Army provided all air support for the district,[6] being known as the Air Forces of the Central Asian Military District from 1980 to 1988. Air defence was also provided the 12th and 14th Air Defence Armies. The 57th Separate Airborne Brigade based in Aktogay.[7] was the only unit of the Soviet airborne based in Kazakhstan.


At the time of the declaration of the independence of Kazakhstan and the dissolution of the Soviet Union, the 24th Fighter-Bomber Aviation Division, as well as three other separate air regiments, were stationed in the country.[8] By late 1993 the small Kazakh Air Force consisted of a six regiments as well as an air defence fighter regiment.

It included the following units:

  • 11th Division
    • 129th Fighter-Bomber Regiment (Taldy Kurgan)
    • 134th Fighter-Bomber Regiment (Zhangiztobe)
    • 149th Bomber Regiment (Zhetigen/Nikolayevka)
  • 715th Fighter Regiment (Lugovaya [kk; de; ru])
  • 39th Reconnaissance Regiment (Balkhash Airport)
  • 486th Helicopter Regiment (Ucharal)
  • 356th Fighter Aviation Regiment (Semipalatinsk), led notably by Major General Aliy Petrovich Volkov

Modern era

On 17 November 1997, President Nursultan Nazarbayev issued a decree titled "On Further Measures for Reforming the Armed Forces of the Republic of Kazakhstan". As instructed by this, on 1 April 1998, Minister of Defense Sagadat Nurmagambetov, announced the creation of the Air Defense Forces of the Armed Forces, with the first day of operation being 1 June 1998. On 17 April 2008, the Commander-in-Chief of the Air Defense Forces announced August 18 would be celebrated as 'Aviation Day.'[9][10]

In November 2007, Kazakhstan signed an agreement with Belarus, under which 10 Soviet-made Su-27 fighters were modernised at an aircraft repair plant in Baranavichy, designated for the Kazakh Air Defence Forces. In 2008, EADS agreed titanium sourcing agreements with Kazakh suppliers.[11] On 28 October 2010, Eurocopter created a 50/50 joint venture with Kazakhstan Engineering, under which 45 Eurocopter EC145s would be assembled locally for government use.[12] The first of six EC145s ordered by the Kazakh Ministries of Defence and Emergencies was delivered in November 2011.[13]

In early January 2012, Airbus Military and the state-owned Kazspecexport defence company, signed a contract to deliver two EADS CASA C-295 military transport aircraft, and a Memorandum of Understanding for another six aircraft, which were to be delivered over the course of the following year. In May 2012, Kazakhstan announced its intent to acquire 20 Eurocopter EC725 helicopters that were to be assembled in Astana by officials from Kazakhstan Engineering and fitted by the Turkish firm Aselsan.[14]


  • Mukhamedzhan Ibraev (1996 — 2000)[15]
  • Kopen Akhmadiev (2001 — 2007)[16]
  • Alexander Sorokin (17 September 2007 — 27 June 2013)[17]
  • Nurlan Ormanbetov (27 June 2013 — 2 October 2017)
  • Nurlan Karbenov (2 October 2017 — 16 March 2020)[18][19]
  • Nurlan Ormanbetov (since 16 March 2020)[20]


Current inventory

A Kazakh Sukhoi Su-27 on take off
A Kazakh Su-25
An Antonov An-72 of the Kazakh Air Force
Aircraft Origin Type Variant In service Notes
Combat Aircraft
MiG-23 Soviet Union fighter 3[21]
MiG-27 Soviet Union fighter bomber 12[21]
MiG-29 Soviet Union multirole 26[21] 2 provide conversion training
MiG-31 Soviet Union interceptor 20[21]
Su-24 Soviet Union fighter bomber 13[21]
Su-25 Soviet Union attack 14[21]
Su-27/30 Soviet Union & Russia fighter 37 9 on order[21] - 4 provide conversion training
Boeing 757 United States VIP transport 757-200 1[22]
Airbus A400M Spain heavy transport 2 on order[23]
CASA C-295 Spain transport C-295M 8[21]
Shaanxi Y-8 China transport 1 7 on order[21]
Antonov An-12 Soviet Union heavy transport 1[21]
Antonov An-26 Soviet Union transport 8[21]
Antonov An-72 Soviet Union heavy transport 2[21] STOL capable aircraft – one is a An-74[24]
Bell UH-1 United States utility UH-1H 1[21]
Mil Mi-17 Soviet Union utility 49[21]
Mil Mi-24 Soviet Union & Russia attack 22 4 on order[21]
Mil Mi-26 Soviet Union heavy lift / transport 2[21]
Eurocopter EC725 France Utility 20 on order
Eurocopter EC145 France utility 1[21]
Trainer Aircraft
Aero L-39 Czechoslovakia jet trainer 17[21]
Zlín Z 42 Czechoslovakia basic trainer Z 242L 1[21]
CAIG Wing Loong China MALE UCAV 2[25]


The general composition of the Air and Air Defence Force is as follows:[26]

  • Military Aviation
  • Air Defence Forces
  • Center for Parachute Training
  • Air Traffic Control Center

Today the Air and Air Defence Force has four jet bases:[27][28]


  1. ^ IISS 2013, 221.
  3. ^ Военный институт Сил воздушной обороны им. дважды Героя Советского Союза Т. Я. Бегельдинова // Министерство обороны Казахстана
  4. ^ В небе он был неустрашим // «Красная звезда». 05.09.2013
  5. ^ Leo Niehorster, Order of Battle, CAMD, 22 June 1941, Orbat.com.
  6. ^ Holm, Michael. "73rd Air Army". www.ww2.dk. Retrieved 17 March 2017.
  7. ^ "57th independent Landing-Assault Brigade". www.ww2.dk. Retrieved 2019-11-10.
  8. ^ Michael Holm, 24th Fighter-Bomber Aviation Division, accessed October 2011. Note division was given as the 11th in Kazakhstan AF Restructures, Jane's Defence Weekly, 25 September 1993
  9. ^ https://www.mod.gov.kz/rus/struktura/vooruzhennye_sily_rk/sily_vozdushnoi_oborony/osnovnaya_informaciya
  10. ^ "Kazakhstan- Air Force".
  11. ^ Defense Industry Daily, EADS-Signs-its-Own-Titanium-Deal-with-Kazakhstan
  12. ^ "HeliHub Kazakhstan buys 45 EC145s and signs production JV with Eurocopter". 28 October 2010. Retrieved 14 December 2014.
  13. ^ "HeliHub First of six EC145s delivered to Kazakhstan". 28 November 2011. Retrieved 14 December 2014.
  14. ^ "Airbus Group". airbusgroup. Archived from the original on 30 July 2012. Retrieved 10 November 2019.
  15. ^ "Генерал-лейтенант авиации Нурлан Орманбетов: СВО – всегда в процессе совершенствования". 18 August 2020.
  16. ^ "Командование". mod.gov.kz. Retrieved 2016-02-19.
  17. ^ Казахстанская правда 18.09.2007[dead link]
  18. ^ "Назначен главнокомандующий Силами воздушной обороны Вооруженных Сил Республики Казахстан".
  19. ^ "Нурлан Карбенов освобожден от должности главнокомандующего СВО". 16 March 2020.
  20. ^ "Досье: Орманбетов Нурлан Секенович".
  21. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s "World Air Forces 2021". Flightglobal Insight. 2021. Retrieved 20 August 2021.
  22. ^ "UP-B5701 KAZAKHSTAN - AIR FORCE BOEING 757-200". planespotters.net. 31 March 2021. Retrieved 6 April 2021.
  23. ^ "The Republic of Kazakhstan orders two Airbus A400Ms". Airbus. 1 September 2021.
  24. ^ "Arms Transfers Database". Stockholm International Peace Research Institute. Retrieved 23 August 2021.
  25. ^ "Kazakhstan purchases two Chinese Wing-Loong UCAVs | IHS Jane's 360". web.archive.org. 2016-06-08. Retrieved 2020-02-12.
  26. ^ https://www.mod.gov.kz/rus/struktura/vooruzhennye_sily_rk/sily_vozdushnoi_oborony/struktura/
  27. ^ Vad777, Brinkster.net, July 2010
  28. ^ "Orbats".
  29. ^ "600-я Гвардейская авиабаза | Армия Казахстана | Қазақстанның Қарулы Күштері | Qazaqstan áskeri".