Finnish Leopard 2Rs will clear a path through Russian minefields
HELSINKI, FINLAND — One of the most dangerous weapons in Ukraine are mines. Besides being invisible to the enemy, they are dangerous to the civilian population as well. Buried at a certain depth in the soil, anti-tank and anti-personnel mines inflict great damage on military equipment. Landmines are capable of causing a horrific death to a human being.
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Perhaps one of the most meaningful pieces of military equipment is minesweepers. As well as being able to cut their way through numerous minefields, they clear the ground for offensive action. Therefore, Finland’s decision to send three of its wine distillers to Ukraine is excellent news for the Armed Forces of Ukraine [AFU].
On February 23, the Ministry of Defense of Finland made this decision. Thus, three Finnish Leopard 2R heavy mine breaching vehicles are leaving for Ukraine. In addition to delivery, the ministry promised to provide training and spare parts. Helsinki is trying to ensure the presence of the Leopard 2R is effective and not to face problems accompanying a significant part of the platforms delivered to Ukraine.
The total aid announced today will represent three carloads of cargo and is the 13th consecutive aid from Finland to Ukraine since the beginning of the war. “It has been a year since the start of the Russian attack, and Ukraine still needs support in its defense battle. We are sending more defense materials and participating in the Leopard cooperation together with our partners,” said Defense Minister Mikko Savola.
The help from Ukraine
The Leopard 2R is a converted Leopard tank into a heavy minesweeper used to clear a path through a minefield. They are installed with a plow or bulldozer and an automated marking system. All the work was done by the Finnish company Patria.
The Finnish military remained tight-lipped about the delivery schedule and other contents of the military aid package. The ministry says this is being done for security reasons. I.e. the adversary [Russian troops and intelligence] should not learn the route, date, and cargo.
From the beginning of the war until today, Finland has provided more than 750 million euros in military aid to Ukraine. Today’s announced delivery is estimated at €160 million. The additional assistance is tailored to both the needs of Ukraine and the resource situation of the Finnish Defense Forces.
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