Djibouti–Ambouli International Airport (Arabic: مطار جيبوتي الدولي, French: Aéroport international Ambouli) (IATA: JIB, ICAO: HDAM) is a joint civilian/military-use airport situated in the town of Ambouli, Djibouti. It serves the national capital, Djibouti City. The airport is located approximately 6 kilometres (5 mi) from the city centre. It occupies an area of 10 square kilometers. The airport includes a V.I.P terminal for prime ministers and presidents.
It was a modest airport that grew over the years, especially after independence. It was expanded in the 1970s to accommodate more international carriers, with the state-owned Air Djibouti providing regular trips to Air Djibouti's various destinations.
It has a single terminal building, with one departure gate and one baggage carousel. The largest non-commercial operator using the facility is the Djibouti Air Force.
As the airport is located south of Djibouti City and its runways run east–west, an airliner's landing approach is usually directly over the conurbation of the capital, when the wind is from the west.
In 2004, the airport served 182,641 passengers.
Camp Lemonnier was a former a base of the French Foreign Legion. The camp is located on the southern side of the airfield.
In addition to its use as a civilian airport, the following military establishments are located at the Djibouti–Ambouli International Airport:
- Military of France.
- United States Armed Forces.
- Djibouti Air Force.
- Japan Self-Defense Forces.
- Italian Air Force.
- European Union Naval Force.
- Various anti-Somali pirate units.
The War on Terror
France, Djibouti and America use it.
Camp Lemonnier is a United States Naval Expeditionary Base, situated at Djibouti's Djibouti–Ambouli International Airport and home to the Combined Joint Task Force - Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA) of the U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM). It is the only permanent US military base in Africa. The camp is operated by U.S. Navy Region Europe, Africa, Southwest Asia; CJTF-HOA is the most notable tenant command located at the facility as of 2008. It was established as the primary base in the region for the support of Operation Enduring Freedom - Horn of Africa (OEF-HOA). After negotiations between March and May 2001, the Djiboutian government allowed for the base's use by the U.S., providing for de-mining, humanitarian and counter-terrorism efforts, and it now serves as the location from which U.S. and Coalition forces are operating in the Horn of Africa. The access agreement made by officials from the U.S. Embassy in Djibouti with the Djiboutian government allows for use of the camp, as well as a nearby airport and port facilities.
According to a former senior U.S. military commander, Camp Lemonnier is the centerpiece of a network of around six U.S. drone and surveillance bases stretching across the continent. The latter air bases are smaller and operate from remote hangars situated within local military bases or civilian airports. Due to its strategic location, Camp Lemonnier also serves as a hub for aerial operations in the Persian Gulf region.
The 1960s radio mast
A regional communications mast was built there in the late 1960s.
The 1970s radome
A navigational radar, inside a small radome, was used in the 1970s.
Local noncritical and aviation aids were added in the 1980s and 1990s.