Bulgarian Parliament approves decision on repair of Ukrainian tanks and military equipment


According to Interfax-Ukraine on May 4, The Bulgarian Parliament approved the decision to repair Ukrainian military equipment in Bulgarian facilities, the BGNES news agency said: "Parliament gives a mandate to the Council of Ministers to discuss and implement measures related to the war in Ukraine, including the repair of military equipment for Ukraine," BGNES said on its website on Wednesday. Some 200 MPs voted in favor, while 16 voted against and one abstained.
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Lots of Ukrainian tanks and other equipment can be repaired and brought back into service (Picture source: Twitter account of Militarylandnet)


The package includes measures to overcome the consequences of economic sanctions, humanitarian, financial and military assistance to Ukraine, continued support for Ukraine's accession to the EU, assistance to Ukrainian refugees, enabling the import of Ukrainian grain to Varna, as well as strengthening energy cooperation, repairing Ukrainian military equipment, continuing the supply of humanitarian aid.

Despite having local arms factories, until 1944 Bulgaria relied mostly on imports to equip its military. Nevertheless, the Bulgarian defense industry was capable of producing training and light attack aircraft, such as the DAR-10 and Laz-7. After the installment of a Communist government the same year, the country started a process of massive industrialization but continued to import equipment. By the 1980s a large part of the equipment came from local suppliers. In the late 1980s exports reached about $800 mln. annually, trade partners being mostly Egypt, Algeria, Angola, North Korea, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Cuba and Vietnam. After the loss of the Warsaw Pact and secondary markets, surplus weapons, as well as newly manufactured items, were illicitly exported to a variety of countries and rebel groups across Africa and Asia. Industrial know-how remains in the country, enabling it to repair damaged Ukrainian equipment (tanks, armored vehicles, etc.), as well as captured Russian tanks.

Just to give an idea of what the Bulgarian army currently operates in the field of tanks and armored vehicles, and, hence, can repair, however, the Russian army generally operates much more modern vehicles and equipment (but the Bulgarian know-how can be adapted, the problem residing in spare parts):
* T-72M2 MBT
* MT-LB in different versions
* BMP-23
* BTR-60
- BTR-60PAU – Artillery command variant of the BTR-60PA with 4 whip antennas.
- BTR-60PB with Polish WAT turret from SKOT-2AP. Only a prototype was made.
- BTR-60PB-MD (bronyetransport’or moderniziran) – BTR-60PB upgraded with VAMO DT3900 or Rover TD-200 diesel engine, four MB smoke grenade dischargers on the turret (two on each side), "Melopa" night sight, new day sight, new NBC protection system and modern radios. It also has a rearview mirror on the left-hand side of the hull. Only a prototype was made.
- BTR-60PB-MD1 – Version for the Bulgarian army, powered by a Cummins ISB 25.30 turbocharged Euro 3 diesel engine of 250 hp and fitted with side hatches. About 150 in service.
BTR-60PB-MD3 – export model, fitted with a KamAZ diesel engine, different sights and eight additional smoke grenade launchers in the front right corner of the hull. The prototype, shown in 2004, was based on a BTR-60PA.
* BRDM-2


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Some disabled Russian tanks could be repaired in Bulgarian facilities (Picture source: Ukrinform)


 

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