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Romania seeks M1 tanks and other equipment

Romania plans to seek parliamentary approval to procure a battalion of M1 Abrams tanks, seen on exercise in the country in 2016. (Romanian MoD )

Romania plans to seek parliamentary approval to procure a battalion of M1 Abrams tanks under a government-to-government agreement, Lieutenant General Teodor Incicaș, the national armaments director, told the podcast of the Ministry of National Defence's weekly Observatorul Militar (Military Observer). He said the Romanian Land Forces General Staff considers it the best choice for equipping one of the brigades the country is reorganising, according to the transcript of an interview with Lt Gen Incicaș posted online on 8 March.

Lt Gen Incicaș said that parliamentary approval would also be sought for a tracked infantry fighting vehicle and three battalions of self-propelled howitzers.

Regarding Romania's procurement of 227 Piranha 5 armoured personnel carriers (APCs) under a contract signed in 2017, Lt Gen Incicaș said the first 94 vehicles would be followed by the first batch of 47 of the remaining 133 APCs by the end of 2023. He added that the process had recently been launched to gain parliamentary approval of 150 more Piranha 5s for a Romanian Army brigade that is being reorganised to meet NATO requirements. He attributed a one-year delay in the Romanian Piranha 5 programme to the requirement for its command-and-control system to be produced indigenously by Romarm subsidiary Uzina Mecanica Bucuresti (Bucharest Mechanical Factory). The vehicles themselves could start being produced in Romania as early as 2023, according to Lt Gen Incicaș.

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