US donates 10 Mercedes Atego trucks to Niger army
The U.S. Government has donated ten 4×4 Mercedes Atego troop transport trucks to the Nigerien army, AfricanMilitaryBlog reports. It has also provided a logistics warehouse as part of the donation. The donation which was delivered on May 27 will be used under the G5 Sahel Joint Force, in combating terrorism in the region.
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The U.S. Government has donated ten 4×4 Mercedes Atego troop transport trucks to the Nigerien army (Picture source: AfricanMilitaryBlog)
U.S. Ambassador Eric Whitaker attended the handing over ceremony which took place at the Direction Centrale du Matériel, in Niger. He mentioned that the ten trucks are worth up to $1 million. Issoufou Katambé, Niger’s Minister of National Defense, and senior military officials were present during the handover. A logistics warehouse valued at $430 000 was also donated to safely store essential spare parts for Niger’s combat vehicles.
The Mercedes-Benz Atego is a range of general-purpose rigid trucks introduced by Mercedes-Benz in 1998. A new model was introduced in 2004, followed by a facelift in 2010 and another new model in 2013. The latest version is available in gross vehicle weights of 6.5 to 16 metric tonnes and is powered by a straight 4- or 6-cylinder engine. Atego trucks can transport up to fifteen soldiers.
The second batch of vehicles donated by the USA - which comprised of 13 Mamba APCs - was also delivered on December 5, 2019, for a total value of $21 million. The United States had also previously donated a Command and Control (C2) center valued at $16.5 million. Since 2013, Niger has also received four Cessna 208 Caravan aircraft, with two configured for surveillance.