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Arrival Alert: Promised Leopard 2 Main Battle Tanks and Simulators from Canada Land in Ukraine

All eight Leopard 2 primary combat tanks pledged by the Canadian Department of National Defence for Ukraine have now reached Poland. Along with the eight Leopard 2 primary combat tanks dispatched to Poland, Canada has also installed three Leopard firing simulators from the Canadian Armed Forces’ (CAF) stock to assist Ukrainian tank crews in mastering the operation and strategies of these primary combat tanks. The Leopard 2 serves as the primary combat tank for the Canadian Armed Forces and several allies and partners. The Canadian Department of National Defence’s backing for Ukraine is extensive and will persist.

Canadian Minister of National Defence Anita Anand also declared that Canada will supply ammunition, replacement parts, and will assign Canadian Armed Forces personnel to instruct Ukrainian soldiers on these tanks’ usage in a third nation. This donation satisfies Ukraine’s immediate demand for tanks – a plea reiterated by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov at the preceding week’s Ukraine Defense Contact Group meeting in Germany. Canada’s contribution also arises from thorough coordination with allies and partners, who likewise plan to gift Leopard 2 primary combat tanks to Ukraine, among other Western primary combat tanks.

The Leopard 2 is a third-generation German primary combat tank. Designed by Krauss-Maffei in the 1970s, the tank entered service in 1979 and superseded the prior Leopard 1 as the West German Army’s primary combat tank. The Canadian Armed Forces procured 12 2A4s/Pz 87 primary combat tanks from Switzerland for the ‘Force Mobility Enhancement’ project which, together with the remaining unutilized ex-Dutch tanks, saw 18 converted to Armoured Engineering Vehicles and 4 converted to Armoured Recovery Vehicles. Canada has also bought 15 2A4s from Germany as Logistic Stock Vehicles. Canada procured 20 Leopard 2A6s from the Netherlands. These were delivered in 2007.

These robustly armored and highly secured vehicles furnish soldiers with a tactical advantage on the battlefield, courtesy of their excellent maneuverability, firepower, and survivability. The Leopard 2 is a remarkable battle tank that serves the Canadian Army well. The gift of Canadian Army Leopard 2 tanks, coupled with donations by Allies and partners, will substantially assist the Armed Forces of Ukraine as they bravely battle to defend their country’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity.

Canada has already pledged well over $1 billion in military aid to Ukraine, and Canada will continue to stand by Ukraine as it confronts Russia’s unlawful and unjustifiable conflict.

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