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Forbes Ukraine: Italian Marconi Industrial Services repaired seven howitzers for Ukraine free of charge

M109 self-propelled howitzer
M109 self-propelled howitzer. Credit: Wikipedia
Forbes Ukraine: Italian Marconi Industrial Services repaired seven howitzers for Ukraine free of charge

Marconi Industrial Services, an Italian private company, has repaired and modernized seven M109 self-propelled howitzers for the Ukrainian Armed Forces free of charge, Forbes Ukraine reported citing a company representative in Ukraine, Armen Melik.

According to Melik, the initiative for the repair came directly from the Ukrainian military, who asked him to help restore the combat capability of the Italian M109 howitzers, which were inoperable.

“The guys found out they would receive howitzers, but not in working condition, and asked me to help with the repairs. As a result, I managed to find the funds to repair even seven, although they asked for four,” Melik said.

The howitzers were transported to Italy, where they were repaired and modernized.

The cost of repairing one howitzer is about €3 million, Melik says. So the total amount of assistance is more than €20 million.

Ukraine’s armed forces have already received repaired howitzers for service.

Forbes Ukraine said, citing Marconi CEO Angelo Adriano, that the company is ready to provide further technical support for the howitzers, supply spare parts, and carry out further modernization.

Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief shares a video showing British 105-mm howitzers L119 in action

Italy provided several batches of M109 self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine at the end of 2022. According to Melik, 120 decommissioned but allegedly restored Italian howitzers were handed over to Ukraine.

However, FT, citing an undisclosed advisor to the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, reported in April 2023 that none of the 20 howitzers of one of the parties were combat-ready.

In June, the New York Times reported that Ukraine had received defective weapons worth $800 million, including Italian M109L self-propelled artillery systems.

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