Czech army receives more Leopard 2A4 tanks from Germany

The Czech Ministry of Defense on April 27 announced that two more Leopard 2A4 tanks arrived in Přáslavice, Czech Republic. This is another part of the donation of 14 main battle tanks and one recovery tank (Büffel) that the Czech Republic received from the Federal Republic of Germany for helping Ukraine. The first tank already passed military tests a month ago, so there is nothing more to prevent the deployment of new units for training.
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The Czech army received additional Leopard 2A4 tanks from Germany, enabling armored units to start training (Picture source: Czech MoD)

"As the soldiers like to say, and quite truthfully: there is no army without a heavy brigade. That's why I have a heavy part-time job among my priorities from the beginning. The signing of the contract for the CV90 infantry fighting vehicles is approaching, and together with other pieces of Leopard 2A4 tanks, it is a clear shift towards an army equipped with modern Western technology," said Minister of Defense Jana Černochová. Leopard tanks also mean a significant strengthening of compatibility within NATO. This technique is also used by our close neighbors, for example Poland and Hungary.

In addition to the aforementioned 14 tanks and 1 recovery tank, the delivery will also include an initial package of spare parts, ammunition and three-year service support from the supplier, which also includes the training of Czech soldiers. The Czech Republic received tanks from the Federal Republic of Germany as partial compensation for its assistance to Ukraine. The value of the gift is almost 4 billion CZK. In October 2022, representatives of the Ministry of Defense of the Czech Republic signed a series of contracts related to the supply with German partners. It was a Memorandum of Understanding, an Implementation Agreement for training, an Administrative Arrangement and an Agreement on the Supply of Tanks.

The remaining 11 main battle tanks should be delivered to Přáslavice by the end of 2023. The Büffel recovery tank, which is mounted on an improved Leopard 2 chassis, will be ready by mid-2024.

On 18 May 2022, Czech Defence Minister Jana Černochová informed the Government that she and German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht had agreed on the donation of 15 Leopard 2 A4 tanks. According to the Ministry of Defence, the two sides would also start negotiations on the possibility of acquiring up to 50 tanks of the most modern version 2 A7+ for the Czech Army in the coming years.

In September 2022, the Czech Republic and Germany finalized legal and technical details regarding the donation of the above-mentioned Leopard tanks to the Czech Army. In Germany, modifications to the first tanks were implemented to meet the needs of the Czech Army and to ensure compatibility, especially with communication and information systems. The 14 Leopard 2A4s originally come from the arsenal of the Swiss and German armed forces and were purchased by Rheinmetall after their retirement. The Büffel recovery tank will be a newly manufactured tank that will not be delivered until 2024. Until the arrival of this newly manufactured recovery tank, another Büffel recovery tank will be leased to the Czech Republic.

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The Czech army is receiving more and more Leopard 2A4 tanks from Germany (Picture source: Czech MoD)

Defense News April 2023