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Update: Croatia receives first Bradley IFVs

The Croatian government is procuring 89 Bradley combat vehicles donated by the US. (Croatian MoD/F Klen)

The first batch of 22 M2A2 Bradley ODS (Operation Desert Storm) infantry fighting vehicles (IFVs) for the Croatian Army arrived in the port of Rijeka on 6 December, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced later the same day.

The vehicles will be overhauled by Đuro Đaković Special Vehicles in Slavonski Brod so that they are ready for operational service by 2026.

The Minnesota National Guard, which has been co-operating with Croatia since 1996, will support the Croatian Army's introduction of Bradley vehicles into operational service under the State Partnership Program between the Adriatic country and the US state. Croatian Bradley modernisation is listed on the Minnesota National Guard's website as one of its priorities for 2024.

Croatian Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Ivan Anušić said on 6 December that the “Bradleys will significantly contribute to strengthening the overall combat power and readiness of our armed forces”.

The Croatian government approved the procurement of 89 Bradley combat vehicles donated by the US under the latter's Excess Defense Articles programme on 27 January 2022, including the overhaul of 62 IFVs as well as goods and services. The total value of equipping the Bradleys is USD196.4 million, to be paid for between 2023 and 2027, the Croatian MoD said at the time. The M2A2 Bradley ODS IFV has the firepower, protection, and manoeuvrability required by the manoeuvre units and guard brigades of the Croatian Army for both national and NATO collective defence and will support Croatia in meeting the alliance force goal of having the capability to form a medium infantry brigade, according to the MoD.

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