Ukraine conflict: Germany offers Gepards to Kyiv

by Nicholas Fiorenza

Germany will supply 50 Gepard anti-aircraft systems (seen during an exercise in 2010) to Ukraine. (Bundeswehr/Marcus Rott)

Defence ministers and chiefs of defence staff of the 43 members of the Ukraine Defense Consultative Group met at Ramstein Air Base in Rhineland-Palatinate, southwestern Germany, on 26 April, to discuss how to bolster Kyiv's resistance to Russia. US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin told journalists after the meeting, which he hosted, that German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht had “made a huge commitment” to provide Ukraine with 50 Cheetah (Gepard) anti-aircraft systems and that Canada would supply eight armoured vehicles.

Opening the meeting, Austin said that more than 30 allies and partners across the globe have provided more than USD5 billion in security assistance for the self-defence of Ukraine, including USD3.7 billion from the United States. “Ukraine clearly thinks it can win, and so does everybody here,” he said, describing the embattled country as an ”arsenal of democracy”.


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Slovenia signs Boxer contract

by Nicholas Fiorenza

Slovenian Boxers will be based on the Lithuanian version (pictured), which is equipped with a Rafael Samson Mk II RWS. (Lithuanian MoD)

Slovenia, represented by the Organisation for Joint Armament Co-operation (OCCAR), signed a contract with Rheinmetall-Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) consortium Artec to purchase 45 Boxer armoured vehicles in four variants worth a total of EUR281.5 million (USD296.3 million), the consortium and its two constituent companies announced in a joint press release on 17 May.

The Slovenian Ministry of Defence (MoD) originally announced the decision to procure Boxer through OCCAR in February 2018 for its Central Battalion Battle Groups.

OCCAR said on its website on 12 May that the Slovenian Boxers will be based on the Lithuanian Boxer design, including the Rafael Samson Mk II remote weapon station (RWS). Rheinmetall told Janes on 18 May that there would only be minimal adaptations to the Boxers to Slovenian requirements thanks to the vehicles' modularity. OCCAR expects the first Boxer deliveries from KMW through Artec in 2023 and the consortium said they would be completed in 2026.


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BMPT Terminator makes combat debut in Ukraine

by Miko Vranic

A 90th Guards Tank Division BMPT providing fire support to T-72 tanks during a March 2021 exercise in Russia's Central Military District. (Russian MoD)

Russia's RIA Novosti news agency on 18 May confirmed the deployment of the Boevaya Mashina Podderzhki Tankov (Tank Support Fighting Vehicle, BMPT) Terminator, three days after footage showing four of the vehicles accompanied by a couple of T-72 family main battle tanks (MBTs) purportedly taken in the Luhansk oblast in eastern Ukraine began circulating on Russian social media.

The BMPT is a heavily armed and armoured vehicle, the protection and mobility of which matches that of a MBT, is designed to provide suppressive fire against enemy infantry.

The vehicle has been assigned the Main Automotive-Armoured Tank Directorate (GABTU) index code Obyekt (Object) 199 and was initially dubbed Ramka (Frame) 99. It was marketed as Terminator to foreign customers, likely inspired by the blockbuster US film of the same name, which was later also adopted by the Russian Ministry of Defence.


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Belgium to acquire nine CAESAR SPHs

by Nicholas Fiorenza

Belgium is to acquire nine CAESAR NG SPHs under the expansion of the Capacité Motorisée (CaMo) programme with France. (DGMR)

Belgium is to acquire nine CAESAR NG (new generation) self-propelled howitzers (SPHs) under the expansion of the Capacité Motorisée (Motorised Capability, CaMo) programme with France, the ministries of defence (MoDs) of the two countries announced on 13 May. Belgian Defence Minister Ludivine Dedonder and her French counterpart, Florence Parly, signed the CaMo 2 intergovernmental agreement on the EUR62 million (USD65 million) procurement of the SPHs for delivery in 2027. The French and Belgian MoDs expected the Direction générale de l'armement (DGA), France's defence procurement agency, to announce the contract in the coming weeks.

The contract will cover joint and integrated training intended to achieve plug and fight interoperability between Belgian and French combat units, as well as nine digitised CAESAR NGs, including communication and information system equipment and the equipment and software necessary to integrate the SPHs into a digitised network. It also includes tools, documentation, and equipment to programme ammunition and fire-control systems (FCSs) and their software.


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Defence ministers and chiefs of defence staff of the 43 members of the Ukraine Defense Consultative ...

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