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Qatar is now one of the most well-equipped military forces in the Middle East

Qatar is now equipped with the most modern combat vehicles made in Germany including the Leopard 2A7+ main battle tank, the PzH 2000 155 self-propelled howitzer on tracked armored, Dingo 2 HD 4x4 armored vehicle and Fennek a 4x4 light reconnaissance armored vehicle.
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From the left to the right, Qatari PzH 2000 155mm self-propelled howitzer, Leopard 2A7+ main battle tank, Dingo 2 HD armored vehicle and Fennek 4x4 reconnaissance armored vehicle (Picture source Twitter account Abdulmoiz @abdulmoiz1990)

According to Military Balance 2020, Qatar is attempting to transform its military capabilities and the regional defense standing based on significant equipment acquisitions, with the aim of creating one of the most well-equipped forces in the region. The speed and scale of the equipment plan suggests that Qatar will need significant foreign help to integrate and operate its new capabilities.

Qatar placed an order with KMW for 62 tanks in 2013. In 2016, German Company Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) has delivered the first batch of Leopard 2A7+ to Qatar, according to a contract for the purchase of 62 main battle tanks. The Leopard 2A7+ is an improved version of the Leopard 2A6 especially designed to perform combat operations in the urban areas. The tank was unveiled in 2010 during the defense exhibition in Paris, Eurosatory.

The Leopard 2A7+ is armed with a 120 mm smoothbore gun L55, which has been developed by Rheinmetall GmbH of Ratingen, Germany to replace the shorter 120 millimeter L44 smoothbore tank gun on the Leopard 2. The Leopard 2A7+ is equipped with IED and mine protection modular concept allows the integration of an urban operations kit that also offers a 360° protection against RPG while a duel-kit retains the crew from KE- and SC-projectiles, especially on the frontal arc in classical duel-situations.

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Qatari Leopard 2A7+ main battle tank (Picture source Twitter account Abdulmoiz @abdulmoiz1990)

In 2013, Qatar has ordered 24 PzH 2000 155mm self-propelled howitzer from the German Company KMW in support of its armed forces’ modernization program. Manufactured in collaboration with German company Rheinmetall Land Systems, the PzH 2000 si one the most modern tracked self-propelled howitzer in the world.

The PzH 2000 (Panzerhaubitze 2000) is a 155mm self-propelled howitzer mounted on tracked armored developed by German company Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW) together with the main Rheinmetall Landsysteme for the German Army.

The main armament consists of a Rheinmetall 155mm 52 cal. gun with a chromium-plated barrel and semi-automatic lifting breech block with integrated 32-round standard primer magazine. The 30 km range requirement with NATO standard shells and the 40 km requirement with base-bleed shells has been met with the development of a new 155 mm 52 cal barrel.

The core element of the PzH 2000 is the electrically powered and digitally controlled automatic shell loading system designed to handle the 155 mm shells when loading and unloading the 60-round magazine, loading the gun from the magazine and loading from outside, including inductive fuze setting.

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Qatari PzH 2000 155mm self-propelled howitzer (Picture source Twitter account Abdulmoiz @abdulmoiz1990)

Qatar has purchase Dingo 2 HD (Heavy Duty) the latest version of the 4x4 armored vehicle in the Dingo family. Qatar is the launch customer for the Dingo 2 HD, having taken delivery of 14 vehicles in three versions, ambulance, command post, and radar reconnaissance vehicle. These vehicles have also been optimized for use in high ambient temperatures.

The Dingo 2 HD is based on the UNIMOG FGA20 chassis and features an increased payload with a maximum gross vehicle weight of up to 20,000 kg. A raised roofline to the rear of the commander’s and driver’s position increases its volume for mission flexibility, while a central tire inflation system is fitted as standard to improve cross-country mobility.

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Qatari Dingo 2 HD Heavy Duty 4x4 armored vehicle. (Picture source Twitter account Abdulmoiz @abdulmoiz1990)

In 2014, Qatar has also ordered 32 Fennek 4x4 wheeled reconnaissance vehicles that were delivered from 2017 to 2019. The Fennek is a 4x4 reconnaissance armored vehicle produced by the German Defense Company KMW (Krauss-Maffei Wegmann).

The hull of the Fennek allows flexible armor protection concepts and is typical of all-welded aluminum armor with additional armor modules providing protection from 7.62 mm AP small arms fire and shell splinters. The layout of the vehicle is unique with the driver located at the front of the vehicle with excellent vision to his front via three large bulletproof windows.

The Fennek can run at a maximum road speed of 112 km/h with a maximum cruising range of 1,000 km. The Qatari Fennek is fitted with a remotely operated weapon station armed with one 12.7mm heavy machine gun and optics to conduct reconnaissance missions.

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Qatari Fennek 4x4 reconnaissance armored vehicle. (Picture source Twitter account Abdulmoiz @abdulmoiz1990)

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