Dozens of Leopard tanks to be delivered to Ukraine in mid-year – German def min
Ukraine will start receiving several dozen slightly outdated Leopard 1A5 tanks in mid-2023, German defence minister said.
In an interview with the Spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, Boris Pistorius said that Germany had kept its word and handed over 18 modern Leopard 2A6s and 40 Marder infantry fighting vehicles back in March, "as well as other [military aid] packages such as urgently needed spare parts and ammunition".
According to Mr Pistorius, together with partners, "we eventually managed to supply a brigade."
"The delivery of the main Leopard 1A5 battle tanks has just begun. This week alone, more than a hundred Ukrainian soldiers have started training on Leopard 1," Germany's defence minister was quoted as saying.
"Delivery of up to 80 Leopard 1s will begin in the middle of the year."
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Leopard 1A5 is the latest modification of the tank dated 1987, which has significantly increased its defence, given it a weapon stabiliser, a new sighting and computerised fire control system, and a turbocharged 830 hp diesel engine.
It is "a very good performance for a 42-tonne vehicle", Defence Express, a Ukrainian publication focusing on military topics, writes.
Ukraine's allies have been supplying it with modern capabilities necessary for a planned counter-offensive.
Earlier this week, NATO secretary general Jens Stoltenberg said that the allies had handed over 1,550 armoured vehicles, 230 tanks, and a "huge" amount of ammunition to Ukraine.