Netherlands confirms the supply of PzH 2000 155mm tracked howitzers to Ukraine

According to information published by the Dutch Ministry of Defense, the Netherlands has confirmed the supply of a limited number of PzH 2000 155mm tracked self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine. These howitzers will come from the military inventory of the Dutch armed forces.
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Dutch army PzH 2000 155mm tracked self-propelled howitzer. (Picture source Army Recognition)

On April 20, 2022, Army Recognition reported that the Government of the Netherlands planned to provide PzH 2000 155mm tracked self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine, and Germany will provide Ukraine with ammunition and training for these artillery systems. When this news was published, the Dutch government had not yet officially announced the delivery of the howitzers to Ukraine.

The supply of the PzH 2000 155mm howitzers will take place in response to Ukraine’s request for heavier weapons. The Netherlands committed itself to supplying the equipment on 19 April 2022. Citing information published by the Dutch Ministry of Defense (MoD), the delivery of these howitzers will take place in cooperation with Germany, which will supply ammunition for the weapons. Germany will also provide training to enable the Ukrainians to use the equipment.

The operational readiness of Royal Netherlands Army units will not be affected. The Netherlands has enough resources to guarantee training and deployment.

According to the Military Balance 2021, the army of the Netherlands has a total of 56 PzH 2000 155mm self-propelled howitzers including 18 in active service and 38 in store. The PzH 2000 was ordered by the Netherlands in 2002 and delivered between 2004 and 2009.

The Pzh 2000 is one of the latest generations of artillery self-propelled howitzer that was designed and developed by a German consortium first consisting of Krauss-Maffei, KUKA and Rheinmetall and the second of Wegmann and MaK. The first production howitzer was completed early in 1998 and, following company trials, was handed over to the German Army in July 1998 which was the first customer of the PzH 2000.

Currently, the PzH 2000 155mm howitzer is in service with Croatia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Netherlands, Qatar, and now Ukraine.

The PzH 2000 is a 155mm self-propelled howitzer based on tracked armored chassis. The design of the vehicle consists of three main parts with the driver seated at the front right of the tracked armored chassis and powerpack on its left and the turret mounted at the rear of the hull.

The main armament of the PzH 2000 consists of one 155mm L52 gun developed by Rheinmetall which has an automatic loading system. The PzH 2000 automatic shell-loading system can handle 60 ammunition. The ammunitions are picked up from the back of the vehicle and automatically stowed in the 60-round magazine in the center of the chassis. The second armament of the PzH 2000 includes one 7.62 mm machine gun mounted on the left hatch on the roof turret. Four 76 mm smoke grenade dischargers are mounted on each side at the front of the turret, firing forwards.

The PzH 2000 can fire all the standard NATO 155 mm ammunition with a maximum firing range of 30 km with standard HE-FRAG (High Explosive Fragmentation) projectiles and 40 km with base bleed projectiles.

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