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Sweden hands over its best tanks to Ukraine

Sweden supplies Ukraine with ten main battle tanks.
Stridsvagn 122 tank
Stridsvagn 122 tank, the Swedish version of the German Leopard 2 tank. Credit: Swedish Armed Forces.
Sweden hands over its best tanks to Ukraine

Sweden supplied Ukraine with ten Swedish-made Stridsvagn 122 tanks, according to the Swedish Armed Forces.

The Ukrainian crews of these Stridsvagn 122 tanks were trained in Sweden.

“We have given them [Ukrainians – ed.] everything we could in terms of good equipment and good knowledge. Now we wish them all the best in liberating their country,” Mats Ludvig, Chief of Operations at the Swedish Army Staff said.

The Stridsvagn 122 is a third-generation Swedish main battle tank, a licensed German Leopard 2A5 tank with various modifications. It is the best tank in the Swedish arsenal and one of the best main battle tanks in the world.

The Stridsvagn 122 has a four-person crew: tank commander, gunner, charger, and driver. The Stridsvagn 122 has a smoothbore 12-centimeter cannon, two 7.62-millimeter machine guns, and two smoke-thrower batteries. Armor-piercing arrow projectiles and explosive grenades are used for the cannon, which can engage targets at distances of up to four kilometers.

The Stridsvagn 122 entered service with the Swedish Armed Forces in 1996. By 1998, 180 Stridsvagn 122 tanks were in the Swedish Armed Forces. In 2022, the Swedish Army had 120 Stridsvagn 122 tanks.

For more than 30 years, the Stridsvagn 122 tank has formed the backbone of Swedish mechanized brigades. Now, the Ukrainian Army has about ten of these main battle tanks at its disposal, with tank crews trained in Sweden by Swedish instructors.

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