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Czech Republic to deploy DANA SPHs and TITUS vehicles to Lithuania

The ACR is deploying a battery of DANA vz 77 SPHs to Lithuania in 2024. (ACR)

The Army of the Czech Republic (ACR) announced on its website on 21 November that it is deploying a battery of DANA vz 77 152 mm 8×8 self-propelled howitzers (SPHs) to Lithuania. The Czech Army's 3rd Task Force, including a DANA battery from the ACR's 131st Artillery Battalion, will be deployed in Lithuania during the first half of 2024 as part of the German-led enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) NATO battlegroup in the Baltic country.

Most of the task force's over 100 soldiers will be from the 131st Artillery Battalion, comprising fire support and artillery reconnaissance troops, as well as staff personnel. It will be supplemented by radar experts, workshop personnel, military police, medics, and members of the ACR Information and Cyber Forces Command.

Lieutenant Colonel Jan Cífka, commander of the ACR's 13th Artillery Regiment, to which the 131st Artillery Battalion is subordinated, said the task force would deploy with new Tactical Infantry Transport and Utility System (TITUS) 6×6 armoured vehicles. The Czech gunners will receive 21 of the vehicles, which will replace the PV3S truck. Most of the TITUS vehicles will be fire support co-ordination posts, which will digitise the Czech gunners, according to Col Cífka. He added that the vehicles will be equipped with the ADLER III automated fire control system, which will fully automate the Czech Army's artillery fire control and co-ordination.

The Czech task force will provide fire support to the eFP battlegroup, also consisting of contingents from the Belgian, Dutch, and Norwegian armies under the command of a German panzer battalion. The task force will train with these contingents as well as with the Lithuanian Iron Wolf Brigade.

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