M109A4 BE Self-propelled Howitzer
M109A4 BE Self-propelled howitzer

Belgium to Send Milan Anti-tank Guided Missiles and M109A4 BE Self-propelled Howitzer

The Militarnyi reported that the Belgian Government made a decision to continue supplying weapons to Ukraine. Belgium could transfer the Milan anti-tank missile systems, and possibly the M109 155 mm self-propelled howitzer. Belgium is considering the supply of 5,000 FN Herstal machine guns and 3,800 tons of fuel, as well as the protective equipment to Ukraine. The Prime Minister of Belgium refused to comment on the type of weapons the country intends to hand over to Ukraine and the terms of its supply. He also estimated the total worth of Belgian military aid to Ukraine at 76 million euros, which includes all arms supplies to the Ukrainian army since February 24.

Second-hand M109A4 BE Self-propelled howitzer Second-hand M109A4 BE Self-propelled howitzer

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The M109 is an American 155 mm turreted self-propelled howitzer to replace the M44. The M109 family is the most common Western indirect-fire support weapon of maneuver brigades of armored and mechanized infantry divisions. The M109 has a crew of four: the section chief/commander, the driver, the gunner, and the ammunition handler/loader. In August 1983, the Belgian Minister of Defence signed a contract with BMY for the purchase of 127 M109A2 self-propelled howitzers. The older M109s were upgraded to M109A3 standard by the Arsenal du Matériel Mécanique et de l’Armement, at Rocourt, near Liège. The M109 is no longer in service in the Belgian army.

M109A4 BE Self-propelled HowitzerIndonesia Army M109A4 BE Self-propelled Howitzer (Photo by FTS Belgium)

The Belgian M109A2/A3 were upgraded in 2008 to M109A4 BE standard through the “MLU M109 program” (Mid-life Update). Most important upgrades were: Semi-automatic loader (SAL) with Breech Activating Device (BAD) and Temperature Measurment System (TMS), Installation of 1,2 Kw diesel generator (APU), New stowage racks, Improved hydraulic system (MHS) for traversing mechanism, Improved NBC/RAM kits with airfilter, Generator 180 amp and Improved Ballistic Turret (IBC). In August 2016, Indonesia purchased 38 second-hand M109A4 BE 155mm self-propelled howitzers from Belgium and a few number of artillery command post using the same armoured tracked chassis.

MBDA MILAN Anti-Tank Guide Missile (ATGM) SystemMBDA MILAN Anti-Tank Guide Missile (ATGM) System

Missile d’Infanterie Léger Antichar (Light infantry anti-tank missile) or MILAN (“milan” also being the French word for kite) is a Franco-German anti-tank guided missile. Design of the MILAN started in 1962; it was ready for trials in 1971, and was accepted for service in 1972. It is a wire-guided SACLOS (semi-automatic command to line-of-sight) missile, which means the sight of the launch unit has to be aimed at the target to guide the missile. The Belgian Army withdrew the MILAN from service in the early 2014. The Belgian Minister of Defence approved selects Spike Medium-Range (MR) anti-tank guided missile to replace Milan.

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