Royal Bahraini Navy Air Arm

Operator Profile

Key Facts

Current Title:
Not known
English Title:
Royal Bahraini Navy Air Arm
First Established:
ICAO Code:


Narrative Summary

The Royal Bahraini Navy was first established in the 1970s as the Naval branch of the Bahrain Defense Force, to monitor shipping routes around the islands of the Bahrain archipelago. In 1987, the title Bahrain Amiri Navy was formally adopted. In 1994 the first helicopters were ordered and delivery took place soon after. In 2002 the official name was changed to Royal Bahraini Navy. The Navy air arm remains an all-helicopter force.

Key Dates

1971?    Bahrain Defense Force first established.
1987    BDF naval branch renamed Bahrain Amiri Navy.
1994    First helicopters acquired.
Feb 2002    Bahrain Amiri Navy renamed Royal Bahraini Navy.

Current Status

The Royal Bahraini Navy operates two fast attack craft and an ex-US Navy frigate which can embark helicopters. The helicopters are currently used for maritime surveillance and Search-and-Rescue tasks.

Future Plans

No future procurement plans known.


National Insignia

The Navy uses the same roundel and fin flash as the Amiri Air Force. The service titles ROYAL BAHRAINI NAVY are carried in Arabic and English on the fuselage sides, replacing the previous BAHRAIN AMIRI NAVY titles.

Aircraft Serial Numbers

The Navy uses the same three-digit numerical sequence system as the Air Force eg: 511.

Unit/Base Codes

Coding system not used


Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used

Current Aircraft Inventory

Click on aircraft type for more details

Aircraft Type Total Del’d Total Active Still on Order Role
MBB Bo 105CBS 2 2 0 Maritime Patrol/SAR

All-Time Aircraft Used List

Aircraft Type Quantity Service Entry Out of Service Origin
MBB Bo 105CBS 2 1994 current Germany

Aircraft NOT Used

No false reports known.


Main Headquarters


Organisational Structure

The Navy’s single helicopter squadron is co-located with the Air Force’s helicopter units at Rifa’a on Bahrain Island.

Current Order of Battle

Click on unit title for more details

Squadron Type Base
5 Squadron MBB Bo 105CBS Rifa’a

Historical Orders of Battle

Not applicable.

All-Time Flying Units List

Not applicable.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

All helicopters are based at Rifa’a on Bahrain Island.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

To be added

More Information


Bahrain Aviation Bibliography – to be added


No feature articles known.


wikipedia: Royal Bahrain Naval Force

Any photographs illustrating this air arm would be welcome.

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