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Rome, Italy - The United Nations has been operating the United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) since 2001, with which the organization supports peacekeeping missions and disaster relief worldwide.

United Nations operates a range of aircraft for the missions. It currently has 15 aircraft assigned to these tasks including, regional turboprops such as ATR 72s, De Havilland Dash 8s and jetliners such as the Boeing 767-300. These planes are provided by the airlines of member countries. There are also a large number of smaller planes that UNHAS leases from various operators when needed. The 767-300, for instance, belongs to Ethiopian Airlines. The majority of the remaining aircraft belong to the Canadian Voyageur Airways.

A new aircraft type is expected to join the UN's fleet in the coming days. Some Sukhoi Superjets from the Russian carrier Yakutia Airlines will be used in the Peace Keeping Operations of the United Nations. In the past, the UN also operated some aircraft from Russia such as Ilyushin Il-76.

Yakutia owns five SSJ-100 jets of which only two have been active in the recent past. The Russian airline has been flying the Superjet since January 2013, making it one of the first operators of the Russian regional airliner. The 98-seater jet will primarily be used for the transportation of UN staff.

According to the Russian aviation news portal, ato.ru, the agreement with the UN will possibly be the only stable source of income for Yakutia Airlines during the lack of demand for air travel.

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