On 11 Jan. 2013, the Free Syrian Army units invaded Taftanaz AB (35°58'20.27"N 36°46'48.50"E), as they were mainly consisted of Ahrar AsSham battalions, AtTali'a Al Islamiyah group, AlFajr Al Islamiyah movement.
The aforementioned are known as "Syrian Islamic Front", that was in addition and coordination with AnNusra Front and Dawood brigade.
The footage of various videos shows that there were not less than 15 helicopters stationed at the air field. Unfortunately, the available close photos shows half the number only.
Let's start here with a very interesting shot for a VIP transporter Mi-8P with serial 1291, what special in this variant are the rectangular windows, the Off-White and Blue lined camo, the absence of external pylons and the most important thing is that the four-digit-serial is completely painted on the fuselage over windows.
Mi-8 with serial 52, the very interesting thing discovered here is that some of Mi-8's in this airbase carry the serial 13XX !! As we always used to see Mi-8's previously with serial 12XX.
This Mi-8 complete serial is 1352.
Another shot for the same Mi-8. Note that the complete serial is painted in white on the boom.
Again another shot shows the washed-out camo of this helo.
Close photo for the same Mi-8 clearly shows the insignia of "مصنع تعمير الطائرات" "Aircraft Overhaul Factory" that located in Neyrab AB in Aleppo which is widely known in the SyAAF as "The Factory".
The insignia is marked in black and white exactly under the right pilot's window.
This shot was taken prior the liberation of the air field shows the same Mi-8 with serial 87.
A close photo for the Mi-8 that stationed exactly next to the aforementioned one (refer to the above photo) with a Sand and light Green camo. Unfortunately the serial is unreadable.
Damaged Mi-8 with serial 99 stationed beside the hanger.
Mi-8 with serial 1395 in a good condition.
Another shot for the same.
The Assadist regime conducted intensive air raids over the base in order to destroy the helicopters (even those nonoperational), here is a photo for the same Mi-8 that survived the undetonated FAB fell only few meters in front of it !!!
A photo was taken prior the liberation as well, shows a Mi-8 with serial 55 beside a Mi-17.
on the background a couple of Mi-25's.
Mi-8 with serial 1397 armed and was ready for flight before the rebels captured the base.
Another photo for the same from the back. Unmounted clamshell back doors means that this helicopter was used also for dropping barrels over towns and villages of the adjacent country.
A photo shows the unguided rockets pods armed.
Again we can see the insignia of "The Factory" under the frontal glass.
The same helo from distance, shows the rockets and pods to the right of the aircraft and confirming that it was in a very good condition for flight.