Wednesday, July 20, 2011

DTN News - AFRICA DEFENSE NEWS: Africa Increases Imports of Ukrainian Arms

Defense News: DTN News - AFRICA DEFENSE NEWS: Africa Increases Imports of Ukrainian Arms
**Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo have bought a total of 250 T-55 and T-72 tanks. The T-72, first produced in the Soviet Union in the 1970s, has been widely exported to many African, Asian and Middle Eastern nations.
(NSI News Source Info) TORONTO, Canada - July 20, 2011: Africa imported $956.7 million of Ukrainian armaments in 2010, an increase of about 20 percent over the previous year, Ukrainian government figures indicate.

"The portfolio of contracts signed by state-run arms exporter Ukrspetsexport increased in value from $799.5 million in 2009 to $956.7 million (in 2010)," said Ukraine's State Service for Export Control.

The 2009 figures represented a 14 percent increase over Ukrspetsexport's 2008 sales.

Africa's leading purchasers of Ukrainian weaponry are Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kommersant-Ukraine newspaper reported Monday.

The two countries bought a total of 250 T-55 and T-72 tanks. The T-72, first produced in the Soviet Union in the 1970s, has been widely exported to many African, Asian and Middle Eastern nations.

Oil-rich Sudan, currently fighting a number of insurgent groups along with Khartoum's campaign in Darfur, also bought Grad multiple rocket launchers, 122-mm 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled howitzers, 152-mm 1S3 Akatsia self-propelled howitzers, D-30 howitzers, 82-mm mortars and a masses of small arms, including 10,000 Kalashnikov AK-47 assault rifles.

Last month Ukrspetsexport signed a $100 million contract with the Ethiopian Defense Ministry on the delivery of more than 200 T-72 tanks, one of the largest contracts Ukrspetsexport has signed in the last 15 years. Ukrspetsexport is expecting the contract to generate additional business in the form of further orders for the repair and upkeep of the tanks.

The Ukrainian arms sales to Africa have aroused criticism as they are seen as fueling Africa's rampant civil wars. Former Ukrspetsexport Director Sergei Bondarchuk criticized the State Service for Export Control data as unrealistic.

"I don't trust these figures," Bondarchuk said. "As far as I know, we only signed an option for a previous contract with Sudan last year and the rest are ongoing deliveries under contracts signed by the previous team."

Documents released by WikiLeaks indicate the U.S. government expressed concern about Ukrainian arms exports to African nations.

One leaked document stated that during U.S.-Ukraine non-proliferation talks in Kiev in November 2009, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Vann Van Diepen claimed that Ukrspetsexport had sold tanks to South Sudan, despite assurances to the contrary and provided the Ukrainian negotiators with evidence of the sales.

Another leaked cable noted, "Van Diepen showed the Ukrainians clear satellite imagery of T-72 tanks unloaded in Kenya, transferred to rail yards for onward shipment, and finally in South Sudan. This led to a commotion on the Ukrainian side."

Ukrspetsexport not only sells the products of the Ukrainian arms industry but also the excess weaponry of the armed forces of Ukraine inherited from the Soviet army.

The T-72 Ural main battle tank was developed as a cheaper and more reliable, however less capable alternative to the T-64. It entered service with Soviet army in 1973. A total of 30 000 tanks of this type were produced in the Soviet Union, China, Czechoslovakia, India, Romania and Yugoslavia. It was exported to about 30 countries. At the end of 1990s Russia operated around 9 000 of these main battle tanks.
The T-72 is protected by composite armor. Some sources claim that front armor of the T-72 is equivalent to 500-600 mm. Side armor provides protection against IFV and helicopter cannons. Later production models were fitted with side skirts. The T-72 is completed with NBC protection system and automatic fire extinguishing equipment.
This main battle tank is completed with a 125-mm smoothbore gun, fitted with new carousel-type autoloader. Previous autoloader on the T-64 was unreliable and had a number of other drawbacks. However autoloader of the T-72 was slower than that, used on the T-64. Rate of fire is 8 rounds per minute, or 1 - 2 rounds per minute, when loaded manually. A total of 39 rounds for the main gun are carried. Effective range of fire with APFSDS round is about 2 000 - 3 000 day and 850 - 1 300 m at night. Armor penetration is about 590 - 630 mm at 2 000 m range.
Secondary armament consists of coaxial 7.62-mm machine gun and 12.7-mm machine gun, mounted on top of the roof in the opened mount.
Vehicle has a crew of three, including commander, gunner and driver.
The T-72 is powered by a V-46 diesel engine, developing 780 horsepower. This main battle tank is completed with a self-entrenching blade and can dig trench during 12-40 minutes, depending on the ground type. When not in use this self-entrenching blade provides additional protection for the front of the hull. Vehicle is fitted with a deep wading kit and can ford water obstacles up to 5 meters deep.
T-72 Ural-1 with improved armor protection;
T-72 Ural-K command tank with navigation equipment and additional communication equipment;
T-72A has a number of improvements;
T-72AK command version of the T-72A;
T-72AV fitted with explosive reactive armor;
T-72M export model of the T-72A;
T-72B with thicker turret armor;
T-72BK command version of the T-72B;
T-72B1 has no capability to launch anti-tank guided missiles;
T-72S export version of the T-72B;
T-72S1 export version of the T-72B1;
T-72BM fitted with second generation explosive reactive armor;
T-90 further development of the T-72. It uses a well-proven hull of the T-72 and turret with all weapon systems of the T-80U. Also it has a number of other improvements. It was accepted to service with the Russian Army in 1993;
PT-91 Twardy improved Polish version of the T-72;
TR-125 Romanian version of the T-72;
M-84 former Yugoslavian version of the T-72;
Other variants are:
BREM-1 armored recovery vehicle;
BREM-2 armored recovery vehicle;
MTU-72 armored bridgelayer;
IMR-2 combat engineering vehicle;
BMR-3M mine clearing vehicle;
BMPT tank support combat vehicle;
BMO-T specialized heavy armored personnel carrier;
2S19 Msta-S 152-mm self-propelled howitzer.


T-72 operators in bright red, former operators in dark red.
Hungarian T-72 tanks.

This list does not include operators of the YugoslavianM-84.

  • Abkhazia – 40
  • Algeria – 500
  • Angola – 22 T-72M1 bought from Belarus in 1999.[1]
  • Armenia – 160[2]
  • Azerbaijan – 180 T-72A en T-72B in 2003.[2]
  • Belarus – 1,465 T-72B.[3][4]
  • Bulgaria – 160 T-72M2 and a large number (some 270) in reserve.[5]
  • Cuba – About 50 Т-72М1 [2]
  • Czech Republic – 543 inherited from former Czechoslovakia in 1993. 179 T-72 main battle tanks in service as of 1 January 2008.
  • Djibouti – 42 bought from Yemen.
  • Ethiopia – 50 bought from Yemen, 200 reportedly ordered from Ukraine in 2011.[6]
  • Georgia – 50 T-72A and T-72M1 in 2004. 140 T-72A, T-72M1 and T-72B in 2005. 170 T-72M1, T-72B and T-72Sim1 in 2007. Approximately 200 T-72B1 and T-72Sim1 in 2008, 169 Т-72B1 and T-72Sim1 as of 2009.[7]
  • Hungary – 195 T-72M and T-72M1 in 2009. To be retired after 2010.[2]
  • India – 1,900 T-72M and T-72M1 as of 2008[8]
  • Iran – 480 T-72M1 and T-72S since 2002.
  • Iraq – 1000 T-72s, T-72Ms, T-72M1s, Lion of Babylon and Saddam tanks were in service with Iraqi Army in 1990. 375 T-72s, T-72Ms, T-72M1s, Lion of Babylon and Saddam tanks were in service with Iraqi Regular Army in 2003. Only 120 T-72M1 are in service as of 2009 with the new Iraqi Army.
  • Kazakhstan - 980[9]
  • Kenya – 77 T-72AV from Ukraine in 2007. 33 delivered in Feb 2009 may bring total to 110.
  • Kyrgyzstan - 215[10]
  • Libya – 150 in 2003.[2]
  • Macedonia – 30 T-72A and 1 T-72AK from Ukraine.
  • Morocco – 200
  • Myanmar – 139 T-72S
  • North Korea – Probably a T-72S was sold to the North Koreans in the early 1990s.[11]
  • Poland – 586 T-72M1 and T-72M1D[12] (2006, 2007 - 597,[13] 2005 - 644, 2004 - 649 [14] ) and 135 T-72M1Z[12][15] (T-72M1 upgraded to PT-91 standard) (Also 98 PT-91 in service) Plans to withdraw the T-72M1 in 2018.
  • Russia – 1,200 in active service, 8000 in reserve[16]
  • Slovakia – 272 T-72M and T-72M1.
  • South Sudan – 32 T-72s from the MV Faina as well as 67 T-72s from previous arms shipments.[17]
  • South Ossetia – 10 Used during in the 2008 South Ossetia War.
  • Syria – 1,600[18]
  • Tajikistan - 44[19]
  • Turkmenistan - 702[20]
  • Ukraine – 1,180[21]
  • Uzbekistan – 70[22]
  • Venezuela – 92 T-72BM ordered
  • Vietnam – 480 T-72M1 in the 2005, supplied by Poland.
  • Yemen – 39 in 2003.[2]

*Speaking Image - Creation of DTN News ~ Defense Technology News
*This article is being posted from Toronto, Canada By DTN News ~ Defense-Technology News



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