Germany blocks Spain from transferring Leopard 2A4 tanks to Ukraine

Germany has officially banned the transfer of Leopard 2A4 tanks to Ukraine. Earlier it was reported that Spain plans to send 40 Leopard A4 tanks to Ukraine.

Despite Kyiv’s statements about the imminent arrival of Spanish Leopard 2A4 tanks in Ukraine, it became known that Germany officially block the transfer of these main battle tanks to the Armed Forces of Ukraine. No official comments were made on this subject, however, apparently, Germany is not interested in providing Kyiv with its weapons for free or simply they don’t want to transfer its latest tech, not to mention the fact that this would significantly aggravate relations between Berlin and Moscow.

“The plans of the Spanish government to supply 40 old German-made Leopard 2 main battle tanks to Ukraine were also slightly hushed up. This Spanish newspaper report caused a big buzz over the weekend because this delivery required Berlin’s approval. And if Berlin agreed, it would be the first time that a NATO member delivered battle tanks to Ukraine. But, according to Berlin government circles, the Spaniards have since retreated sharply: the plan has not yet been finally agreed politically. Was it just an idea from someone below the technical level? In addition, the federal government warned the Spaniards in phone calls that this step would be a retreat from the decision taken by all Western allies (albeit completely informal and unofficial) not to supply Kyiv with tanks according to the German edition of Spiegel.

According to Der Spiegel, the German government warned Spain that it would constitute a departure from an alleged informal decision by the West not to provide Western tanks to Ukraine.

At the same time, experts draw attention to the fact that, in reality, the supply of Leopard 2A4 heavy tanks to Ukraine is completely unpromising, since the Ukrainian military simply does not have specialists capable of operating these combat vehicles, while the term for training in tank control Leopard 2A4 is at least take six months.

Earlier it was reported that Spain plans to send 40 mothballed Leopard A4 tanks to Ukraine bought from Germany in 1995, El Pais revealed, citing government sources.

The tanks are among 108 second-hand Leopards “hibernating” at an army logistics base in Zaragoza for a decade, the Spanish outlet wrote. It added that recovering them would be challenging during the rainy season.

The Spanish government has also offered to train Ukrainian soldiers to operate the tanks in Latvia, where a Spanish military contingent of 500 troops with six Leopard 2E tanks is stationed as part of NATO’s Enhanced Advance Presence. Ukrainian soldiers will be trained on Spanish territory in the second phase, according to the plan. Even a month ago a video was circulated of Ukrainian soldiers training with Leopard tank.

About Leopard 2 tank

The Leopard 2A4 tank was originally developed by Krauss-Maffei in the 1970s for the West German army. The tank is primed with advanced digital fire control systems with laser rangefinders. It also has a fully stabilised main gun and machine gun, and advanced night vision and sighting equipment.

Leopard 2A4 is the most widespread version of the Leopard 2 family, the 2A4 models included more substantial changes, including an automated fire and explosion suppression system, an all-digital fire control system able to handle new ammunition types, and an improved turret with flat titanium/tungsten armor.

The Leopard 2A4 is motorized with an MTU MB 873 diesel engine, which provides 1,103 kW of engine output. The MTU MB 873 diesel engine is a four-stroke, 47.6 liters, 12-cylinder multi-fuel, exhaust turbo-charged, liquid-cooled engine.

The Leopard 2A4 is armed with a 120 mm smoothbore gun which has been developed by Rheinmetall and fires two types of ammunition, APFSDS-T, and HEAT-MP-T. The APFSDS-T has an effective range of over 2,000 m and the HEAT-MP-T has a high degree of effectiveness against both soft and hard targets. The Leopard 2A4 carries a total of 42 rounds of ammunition. It is also equipped with a 7.62mm coaxial machine gun is mounted to the left side of the main armament and one 7.62mm machine gun to the hatch of the loader. Two banks of four 76mm smoke grenade dischargers are mounted to each side of the turret.

The hull of the Leopard 2A4 has spaced multilayer armor and is divided into three compartments: driver at the front, fighting in the center and power pack at the rear. Some variants of the Leopard 2A4 are equipped with add-on armor to increase the protection of the crew against mines and improvised explosive devices.

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