After the creation of the Statute of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, the Royal Netherlands Army was entrusted with the defence of Suriname, while the defence of the Netherlands Antilles was the responsibility of the Royal Netherlands Navy. The army set up a separate Troepenmacht in Suriname (Forces in Suriname, TRIS). Upon independence in 1975, this force was turned into the Surinaamse Krijgsmacht (SKM):, Surinamese Armed Forces. On February 25, 1980, a group of 16 junior SKM officers overthrew the Government. Subsequently the SKM was rebranded as Nationaal Leger (NL), National Army.
The Netherlands has provided limited military assistance to the Surinamese armed forces since the election of a democratic government in 1991. In recent years, the USA has provided training to military officers and policymakers to promote a better understanding of the role of the military in a civilian government. Also, since the mid-1990s, the People's Republic of China has been donating military equipment and logistical material to the Surinamese Armed Forces as well as Brazil.
Suriname's National Armed Forces are composed of some 2200 personnel, the majority of whom are deployed in the Army of Suriname
- A Special Forces Corps.
- A Military Police Corps.
- A Support Arm (Staf verzorgings Bataljon)
Marine - Coast GuardEditIn 1977 the Navy (Marine) of Suriname received three big Patrol Vessels from the Dutch, built by De Vries Scheepsbouw. With a lenght of 32 metres each ship had two Paxman 12YHMC diesel engines of 1200HP performing a maximum speed of 20 knots. Delivery was between february 1977 and 1978 and the hull numbers were S-401, S402 & S-403. Now all three are out of service, the last one S-401 later P-401 is still moored at the Marine Harbor. One was re-built as a luxurious yacht. All ships had their base at the Marine harbor on the Suriname river.
Today much of the fleet of vessels from the Marine of Suriname are based at Boxel, close to the town of Domburg on the Suriname river.
In november 2012 the defence & internal affairs Ministry of Surinam bought three patrol vessels from the French company Ocea for the Coast Guard. These patrol vessels will be used for fishery protection and to counter attack piracy in Surinamese waters. Delivery is expected within two years.
In 1982 a small air arm was formed within the Suriname defense force called "Surinaamse Luchtmacht" in short also called LUMA. The first military aircraft of the young air force was a Hughes 500 - Model 369D helicopter, simply registered SAF-100 and being used for light observation tasks. Unfortunately the aircraft was written off in March 1982, but from May of the same year the Surinam Air Force was being equipped with four (Pilatus) Britten Norman BN-2A Defenders. Registered with the numbers SAF-001, SAF-002, SAF-003 and SAF-004. Later on during the decade a Cessna 172 (SAF-007), a Cessna 206 (SAF-200) and in 1993 a Cessna T303 Crusader (SAF-008) was acquired.
All aircraft undertake border patrols, utility transport and SAR (Search & Rescue) missions from the main base at Paramaribo - Zorg en Hoop and are occasionally detached to Zanderij - Johan Adolf Pengel International Airport, Nieuw Nickerie - Major Fernandes Airfield and Moengo. In 1986 anti-government guerilla activity prompted the government to acquire a pair of Aéropatiale SA.316B Alouette III (SAF-400 & SAF-500) helicopters and then three Pilatus PC-7's (SAF-111, SAF-112 & SAF-113) were ordered for COIN (Counter-Insurgency) missions. One of the Alouette's crashed and both delivered PC-7s were returned to Switzerland but one was later re-delivered. In 1988 a Bell 205 Iroquois (SAF-300) was acquired from Venezuela and used as a gunship for ten years prior to sale to the US as N6594S.
Two CASA 212-400s Aviocar transports (SAF-212 & SAF-214) Garret AiResearch TPE331-10HR turbo-prop engined aircaft were delivered in 1999. One of these two Spanish built CASA 212-400's is a Maritime Patrol Aircraft version (SAF-214) which was modified for the maritime patrol role with a Bendix RDR-1500 surveillance radar. Lack of spares and funding has hampered maintenance and sometimes grounding much of the SAF fleet. Three Indian HAL Dhruv helicopters are ordered and due for delivery in 2013.
On 26 December 2012 ten technical personnel of the Suriname Air Force left to India to be trained to become certified helicopter mechanics. 
- CASA C-212-400 Aviocar - Two aircraft, in service since 1999. (SAF-212, SAF-214)
- Britten-Norman BN-2A Islander - Three aircraft. in service since 1982. (SAF-001, SAF-002 & SAF-003)
- Pilatus PC-7 - One aircraft, in service since 1985. (SAF-111)
- HAL Dhruv - Three helicopters, on order since 2009.
- Cessna TU206 Turbo-Stationair - One aircraft, was in service from 1982 to 1998. (SAF-200 /PZ-PGP)
- Cessna 172 Skyhawk - One aircraft, was in service from 1993 to 1997. (SAF-007)
- Cessna T303 - One aircraft, was in service from 1993 to 1997. (SAF-008 / PZ-POS)
- Britten-Norman BN-2B Defender - One aircraft, was in service from 1982 to 1997. (SAF-004)
- Sud Aviation SE 3160 Alouette III - Two helicopters, were in service from 1986 to 1999. (SAF-400 / PZ-HTH, SAF-500 / PZ-HSH)
- Bell 205 Iroquois - One helicopter, was in service from 1988 to 1998. (SAF-300)
- Pilatus PC-7 - Two aircraft, were in service from 1985 to 1987. (SAF-112, SAF-113)
- Hughes 500 Model 369D - One helicopter, was in service for a short time in 1982. (SAF-100)
Military Police CorpsEdit
The President of the Republic, Drs. Ronald Venetiaan, is the head of the armed forces, with the title of "Opperbevelhebber" which means "Chief of the Military Forces". The President is the supreme authority for all national military matters . The Minister of Defence, Ivan Fernald, assists the President of Suriname in his role over the armed forces.
The "Bevelhebber", Military Chief, is charged with command over the different Military Branches. The current Bevelhebber is Colonel Ernst Mercuur.
The armed Forces is Headquartered in Paramaribo.
All Army Branches have their respective commanders subordinate to the Bevelhebber.
Military Command is also decentralized on the regional level. These military commands also answer directly to the Bevelhebber.
FORMER COMMANDERS OF THE SURINAME ARMED FORCES:
- Yngwe Elstak (25 November 1975 - 25 February 1980)
- Desi Bouterse (July 1980 – 3 December 1992)
- Iwan Graanoogst (temporary, 3 December 1992 – 15 May 1993)
- Arthy Gorré (15 May 1993 – 30 June 1995)
- Glenn Sedney (30 June 1995 – 1 July 2001)
- Ernst Mercuur (1 July 2001 - 4 February 2011 )
- Hedwich Gillaard (4 February 2011 - present )
- Defend the territorial integrity of Suriname.
- Assist the civil power in the maintenance of law and order when required.
- Contribute to the economic development of Suriname.
The Army also participated in the Multi-National Force in Haiti in the 90's. In 2010 Suriname troops were sent to Haiti again.
With latest procurement of three HAL Dhruv helicopters from India for the Air Force and three patrol vessels from France for the new Coast Guard the Armed Forces of Surinam should be better equiped to fullfill it's roles in the future.
In September 12, 2012. The Suriname defense minister, Lamouré Latour, discussed with the Brazilian defense minister the possibility of the Military of Suriname acquiring from two to four Brazilian Embraer AT-29 Super Tucanos light attack (COIN) trainer planes, 500 ton light patrol ships and the revitalization of the armourd vehicles supplied from Brazil in 1983. 
- ↑ http://www.defence.pk/forums/indian-defence/194139-india-ready-deliver-three-dhruv-copters-suriname-army.html
- ↑ http://www.avianet.eu/meer_nieuws.php?ID=4261
- ↑ http://www.gov.sr/sr/ministerie-van-defensie/actueel/technici-luchtmacht-naar-india-voor-bijscholing.aspx
- ↑ http://www.naharnet.com/domino/tn/NewsDesk.nsf/0/D2610B07EF9BB687C22576AE00576AF9?OpenDocument
Aircraft information files Brightstar publishing file 344 sheet 2