Kibrit Air Base

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Kibrit Air Base

قاعدة كبريت الجوية

RAF Kabrit
Airport typeMilitary
OwnerEgyptian Air Force
LocationKabrit, Egypt
Elevation AMSL1,560 ft / 475 m
Coordinates30°14′45″N 032°29′24″E / 30.24583°N 32.49000°E / 30.24583; 32.49000Coordinates: 30°14′45″N 032°29′24″E / 30.24583°N 32.49000°E / 30.24583; 32.49000
  is located in Egypt
Location of Kibrit Air Base
Direction Length Surface
m ft
14R/32L 2,684 8,805 Asphalt
14L/32R 2,684 8,805 Asphalt

Kibrit Air Base (formerly Kabrit Air Base[1]) is an operational Egyptian Air Force (Arabic: القوات الجوية المصرية‎, Al-Qūwāt al-Gawwīyä al-Miṣrīyä) helicopter base located in Egypt, approximately 20 miles north of Suez; 125 km east of Cairo. An SA-342 Gazelle unit is based here. The name of the station came from a nearby village, and in Egyptian means "sulphur كبريت". Kabrit now is the name of a pilot station for Suez canal navigation on the same location.


During World War II the facility was known as RAF Station Kabrit, (Landing Ground 213) and was a major Royal Air Force facility which was used during the Western Desert Campaign. In 1941, it was where the Special Air Service (SAS) was formed. Beginning in 1943, United States Army Air Forces Ninth Air Force units arrived to supplement the RAF against the Germans in the Western Desert. After the war, Kabrit remained a RAF station, hosting transport squadrons, five circa 1946. This continued until the breakdown in relations between the British and Egyptian governments in 1956, when the decision was taken to pull out British forces from the Suez Canal Zone.

The airfield was taken over by the Egyptian Air Force and renamed "Kibrit", becoming one of its main airfields. During the 1956 Suez Crisis, it was an airfield for 20 Squadron EAF, equipped with twelve Soviet-built Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15 aircraft. During the 1967 Arab-Israeli War, the station was attacked by the Israeli Air Force, and many of its Soviet-built MiG-17 aircraft were destroyed on the ramp by the IAF's Dassault Mystère IVs. In the 1973 Yom Kippur War with Israel, the airfield was captured by Israeli ground forces that crossed the Suez Canal along with Kasfreet and Shalufa Airfields, however it was not used by the Israeli Air Force.

Kibrit remains an Egyptian Air Force base. Currently, the airfield houses an SA-342 Gazelle unit. Its main runways are having their asphalt removed, but the hangars are still being used for housing the helicopters.

Operational units and aircraft[edit]

Unit Dates Aircraft
No. 13 Squadron RAF 1943–1944 Martin Baltimore V and VI
1946–1947 de Havilland Mosquito PR34
1951–1955 Supermarine Spitfire PR11 then Gloster Meteor PR10
No. 14 Squadron RAF Detachment 1942 Bristol Blenheim IV
No. 32 Squadron RAF 1954–1955 de Havilland Venom FB1
No. 37 Squadron RAF 1946 Avro Lancaster B7
No. 39 Squadron RAF 1951–1955 de Havilland Mosquito NF36 then Gloster Meteor NF13
No. 40 Squadron RAF 1942 Vickers Wellington 1C
No. 55 Squadron RAF 1944 Martin Baltimore IV and V
No. 70 Squadron RAF 1946 Avro Lancaster B1(FE)
No. 73 Squadron RAF 1952 de Havilland Vampire FB9
No. 78 Squadron RAF 1947–1950 Douglas Dakota
No. 80 Squadron RAF 1943–1944 Supermarine Spitfire IX
No. 104 Squadron RAF 1942 Vickers Wellington II
No. 108 Squadron RAF 1941 Vickers Wellington IC
1942 Consolidated Liberator II
No. 113 Squadron RAF 1941 Bristol Blenheim IV
No. 114 Squadron RAF 1947–1951 Douglas Dakota then Vickers Valetta C1
No. 148 Squadron RAF 1941–1942 Vickers Wellington IC & II
No. 162 Squadron RAF 1942 Vickers Wellington IC & II
No. 203 Squadron RAF 1941 Bristol Blenheim IV
No. 204 Squadron RAF 1947–1951 Douglas Dakota then Vickers Valetta C1
No. 208 Squadron RAF 1951 Gloster Meteor FR9
No. 215 Squadron RAF 1947–1948 Douglas Dakota
No. 216 Squadron RAF 1947–1951 Douglas Dakota then Vickers Valetta C1
No. 219 Squadron RAF 1951–1954 de Havilland Mosquito NF36 then Gloster Meteor NF13
No. 683 Squadron RAF 1951 Vickers Valleta C1
324th Fighter Group, 315th Squadron July, 1943[2] P-40F or K Warhawk
57th Bombardment Wing HQs July, 1943[2] (B-25C or D Mitchell, A-20 Havoc)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Michael Ashcroft (6 November 2014). Special Ops Heroes. Hachette. ISBN 9781472223975.
  2. ^ a b Secret Document 161, Location of units in the Royal Air Force, 34th issue, July 1943, Royal Air Force Museum accession number PR02859.
  • Jefford, C.G. RAF Squadrons, a Comprehensive Record of the Movement and Equipment of all RAF Squadrons and their Antecedents since 1912. Shrewsbury, Shropshire, UK: Airlife Publishing, 2001. ISBN 1-84037-141-2.

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Air Force Historical Research Agency website