BERLIN, GERMANY — One of the former officers of the General Staff of the German army and now a politician of the Christian Democratic Union, Roderich Kiesewetter, offered to buy back from Qatar the Gepard anti-aircraft systems sold there to transfer them to Ukraine.
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In December, Germany approved the sale of Gepard self-propelled artillery systems to Qatar, which were supposed to increase the security of Qatari airspace in connection with the organization of the World Cup in 2022. The World Cup is over, and this type of equipment is proving very good in Ukraine.
The problem is that there are no more Cheetahs available for transfer from German industrial stocks [even kits that are scrapped are refurbished], so Germany is negotiating with other countries/organizations that have them in stock or in their armies for some time. Such proposals by the German politician perhaps indicate one of the directions in which Germany could or is already conducting negotiations.
The countries with which the government in Berlin is negotiating for the transfer/purchase of said kits were not previously specified, but it is suspected that one of them is Belgium, which in the past had 55 of them. It is about one of the Belgian private companies involved in the sale of weapons withdrawn from the local armed forces.
It is possible that the Netherlands still has some [already small] stocks of cheetahs. In addition to these two directions, we can point to Brazil or Romania, which also uses these artillery anti-aircraft systems in the amount of 36 pieces for each country.
Gepard is a very short-range self-propelled anti-aircraft system based on the MBT Leopard 1 and was introduced into service in 1976. However, in Ukraine, machines are transferred in a deeply modernized version of Gepard 1A2 with an automated fire control system characterized by a short reaction time.
The main armament consists of two 35 mm Oerlikon KDA guns with a firing range of up to 3.5-5 km depending on the ammunition used. The theoretical rate of fire is 550 rounds per minute for each gun, allowing for rapid coverage of an area.
In addition to destroying air assault assets such as helicopters or low-flying aircraft, these kits can destroy drones or lightly armored ground vehicles such as armored personnel carriers.
The Gepard also has its own target detection and tracking radar, and the latest version of the Gepard 1A2 is also capable of using frangible core sub-caliber munitions [FAPDS] with a firing range of over 5 km. Ukraine is supplied with the latest version of Gepard 1A2, which underwent modernization in the 1990s.
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