German politician proposes to take back Gepard anti-aircraft gun systems sold to Qatar for Ukraine

According to information published by the "The EurAsian Times" website on January 16, 2022, Roderich Kizewetter, a former German army general staff officer and politician of the Christian Democratic Union party, proposes to take back the Gepard 35mm anti-aircraft armored vehicles sold to Qatar to send them to Ukraine.
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German-made Gepard 35mm anti-aicraft gun system for Qatar. (Picture source: Army Recognition)

In December 2020, Germany’s Federal Security Council issued a final export license for the sale of 15 Gepard self-propelled anti-aircraft tracked armored vehicles to Qatar, which were delivered in 2021.

Today, one of the top priorities of military equipment for the Ukrainian armed forces is air defense systems. Ukraine continues to call on the international community to provide more weapons with air defense capabilities to counter the use of drones by Russian armed forces and missile attacks.

Germany has already delivered to UKraine 30 Gepard self-propelled anti-aircraft gun armored vehicles including 6.000 rounds of ammunition. Citing information provided by Ukrainian soldiers, the Gepard mobile anti-aircraft gun systems have already shown great effectiveness against drone attacks.

Russia has already acquired around 2,000 drones from Iran including Shahed-136 and Shahed-131 loitering munitions also called suicide drones. The Russian defense industry has also developed a wide range of loitering munitions such as the Lancet families which are now in service with the Russian armed forces and are widely used in the fighting in Ukraine.

The Gepard is fitted with a two-man turret armed with two Oerlikon Contraves 35 mm KDA cannons which have a cyclic rate of fire of 550 rds/min and a maximum firing range of 5,500m. The cannons can fire a full range of ammunition including HEI (High-explosive incendiary), HEI-T (High-explosive incendiary Tracer), HEI (BF), SAPHEI-T (Armor Piercing/High Explosive/Incendiary with Tracer), FAPDS (Frangible Armor Piercing Discarding Sabot), APDS-T, APFSDS-T (Armor-piercing fin-stabilized discarding sabot with Tracer), TP/TP-T (Target Practice Tracer Projectile) and AHEAD (Advanced Hit Efficiency And Destruction).

The Gepard can search and track targets in fully autonomous mode thanks to its independent search and tracking radars. In fact, the vehicle is fitted with two radars including pulse Doppler search radar located at the rear of the turret roof and a tracking radar mounted at the front of the turret. The radars provide 360° scanning with simultaneous target tracking, clutter suppression, search on the move capability, and a monopulse tracking mode with a range of 15 km.