Lithuania wants to modernize 2 Mechanised Infantry battalions with new wheeled armoured 2307141

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Defence & Security News - Lithuania

 
 
Wednesday, July 23, 2014 09:13 AM
 
Lithuania wants to modernize 2 Mechanised Infantry battalions with new wheeled armoured.
The Lithuanian Ministry of National Defence is beginning a mechanisation programme to implement the National Defence System Development Programme 2014-2023 approved by the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania and to the end of strengthening and modernising the Lithuanian Land Force. In first phase of the programme two battalions of the Mechanised Infantry Brigade (MIB) Iron Wolf will be equipped with modern wheeled infantry fighting vehicles till 2020.
     
The Lithuanian Ministry of National Defence is beginning a mechanisation programme to implement the National Defence System Development Programme 2014-2023 approved by the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania and to the end of strengthening and modernising the Lithuanian Land Force. In first phase of the programme two battalions of the Mechanised Infantry Brigade (MIB) Iron Wolf will be equipped with modern wheeled infantry fighting vehicles till 2020.
Currently the Lithuanian Land Force is operating M113 armoured personnel carriers.
     
On July 17 the Ministry of National Defence requested by formal letters comprehensive information from nine foreign manufacturers of wheeled infantry fighting vehicles on their production. The companies have been asked to reply by mid-October, while procurement contracts are planned to be signed in 2015.

“The procurement project of infantry fighting vehicles is one of long-term phases of the modernisation of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, which will doubtlessly increase Lithuania’s capacity to defend and to fulfil NATO commitments. We are turning back to the modernisation of the Lithuanian Armed Forces that was terminated needlessly under the former Government,” Minister of National Defence Juozas Olekas said.

The Minister also pointed out that equipping units of the Lithuanian Armed Forces with infantry fighting vehicles was one of the main measures to ensure that national and collective NATO defence plans were viable.

Currently the Lithuanian Land Force is operating M113 armoured personnel carriers. These serve well for moving out personnel of a battlefield but not for efficient fighting: destroying armoured materiel and manpower, ensuring free manoeuvring and protection of forces.

“New fighting vehicles that would satisfy national and NATO requirements would make us capable of operating equally with our allies not only from operational but also from technical point of view,” Director General for Capability and Armament of the Ministry of National Defence Brigadier General Gintautas Zenkevicius said.

Maneuver unit of the Lithuanian Land Force will have an opportunity to train in military ranges in Lithuania and also to take part in combat actions in Lithuania and abroad once equipped with modern infantry fighting vehicles.

According to BG G. Zenkevicius, the new vehicles will allow ensuring an efficient national defence, will be capable of destroying armoured materiel of hostile forces, ensuring freedom of maneuver and protection of forces, and operating in open, forested or populated areas.

Developing capacities of combat units of the Lithuanian Land Force with a particular focus on the MIB Iron Wolf is one of the long-term priority directions for action and procurement of the National Defence System.
 

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