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Britain to Train Women RAF Pilots

From United Press International

Britain will begin training women next year as Royal Air Force pilots for the first time since the service was formed in 1918, the Defense Ministry announced.

Undersecretary of State for Defense Michael Neubert said Thursday that the new policy is a response to the change in society’s attitude toward women.

The female recruits will be trained to fly Hercules transport and tanker aircraft, airborne early-warning planes and air-sea rescue aircraft but will not be trained for armed combat, officials said.

Women were permitted to fly during World War II in the Air Transport Auxiliary, delivering military aircraft to RAF stations, though not flying in combat.

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The RAF hopes that about 10% of its 250 pilot and 100 navigator trainee positions will be filled initially by women.


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