|Unit: Forca Aerea de Mocambique
Serial: 21 (c/n.5238)
Mozambique, spring 1981: Forca Aerea de Mocambique acquired 23 MiG-17s and two MiG-15UTIs from East Germany and the USSR in 1980 and 1981. The 12 East German MiG-17Fs and one MiG-15UTI were all former mounts from the Jagdbombergeschwader 31 (Fighter-Bomber Wing 31), incorporating Lim-5 modifications for MARS rockets): they were delivered to Beira in August 1981, after a complete refurbishment. A small number of East German pilots and technicians were also sent to Mozambique, in order to put the aircraft together, and test-fly them (the first plane was test-flown from Beira on 9 September 1981, by an East German pilot). The aircraft entered service already in October 1981. Reports about additional deliveries of two 12-plane batches in 1983 and 1984, each, were never confirmed. Already on 8 July 1981 Lt. Adriano Bomba defected with the MiG-17 '21', depicted here (c/n 5238) to South Africa: after some testing by the SAAF, the plane was returned to Mozambique. During the 1980s, MiG-17s were flown by two fighter-bomber squadrons stationed at Maputo AB: all were inoperational by the early 1990s. Other known serials are '22' (an example camouflaged dark earth/dark olive green over, light blue under), and MiG-15UTI, painted like the example above, and wearing the serial '20'.
Artist: © Americo Maia