The Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL), Office of Aviation (also known as the INL Air Wing) which provides aviation support and technical expertise to build a host nation’s capacity, operates more than 100 active manned and unmanned aircraft in remote areas all over the world. INL Air Wing’s fleet flies more than 10,000 hours annually in support of its missions related to counternarcotics, counterterrorism, border security, law enforcement, and provides the Department with embassy transportation. The Air Wing operates in several countries in South America and the Middle East on a continuous basis, as well as at other temporary locations as required by the Department. The Air Wing has robust logistics and maintenance capabilities that provide a full range of aviation services to various overseas operating locations and ensure high aircraft availability rates. INL received the General Services Administration (GSA) Federal Aviation Program Award for outstanding achievements in aircraft administration, operations, maintenance, training, and safety in 2000, 2005, 2011, 2015, 2019, and 2021. 

Program Goals: 

  • Provide aviation expertise and resources to eradicate and interdict illicit drugs, strengthen law enforcement, and support counterterrorism efforts.
  • Build host nation capacities to operate and maintain aircraft and use them effectively for counternarcotics and law enforcement purposes.
  • Conduct reconnaissance and surveillance, as well as command and control operations to support counternarcotics operations.
  • Provide aviation support to selected embassies for security and transportation purposes, including personnel and cargo movement and emergency medical evacuation services.
  • Provide centralized maintenance and logistical support to ensure safe and effective operation of a fleet of over 80 active aircraft.

U.S. Department of State

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