Canadian Army Leopard 2A6 Main Battle Tanks
Canadian Army Leopard 2A6 Main Battle Tanks

Canada to Send Leopard 2 Main Battle Tanks and Support to Ukraine

The Canadian Minister of National Defence Anita Anand announced that Canada will supply Ukraine with four Leopard 2 main battle tanks from the Canadian Armed Forces’ (CAF) inventory. The Minister also announced that Canada will provide ammunition, spare parts, and will deploy Canadian Armed Forces members to train Ukrainian soldiers on the use of these tanks in a third country. This donation responds to Ukraine’s urgent request for tanks – a call that was reiterated by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov at last week’s meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group in Germany. Canada’s donation is also the result of extensive coordination with Allies and partners, who are also planning to donate Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine, among other Western battle tanks.

“During my visit to Ukraine last week, I told Ukraine’s Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov that Canada will continue to provide Ukraine with the military aid that it needs to fight and win. Today’s announcement is proof of our enduring commitment. In coordination with our Allies and partners, we will supply Leopard 2 tanks, sustainment, and training on their use in response to Ukraine’s urgent requests. Canada stands firmly with Ukraine in defence of freedom and democracy. Since the beginning of 2022, Canada has committed over $5 billion in direct financial, military, humanitarian, and other assistance to Ukraine,” said Anita Anand, Minister of National Defence.

 Canadian Army Leopard 2A6 Main Battle Tank
A Leopard 2A4 Main Battle Tank from the Lord Strathcona’s Horse (Royal Canadian) Battle Group conducts a simulated attack during the Combat Team Commander’s Course at 3rd Canadian Division Support Base Garrison Wainwright, Alberta on October 16, 2021. (Photo By: Sailor First Class Camden Scott/Directorate of Army Public Affairs)

The Leopard 2 is the main battle tank of the Canadian Armed Forces and of several Allies and partners. These heavily armoured and highly protected vehicles provide soldiers with a tactical advantage on the battlefield, thanks to their excellent mobility, firepower, and survivability. The Leopard 2 is an outstanding battle tank that serves the Canadian Army well. The donation of Canadian Army Leopard 2 tanks, combined with donations by Allies and partners, will significantly help the Armed Forces of Ukraine as they fight heroically to defend their nation’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity. Canada has already committed well over $1 billion in military aid to Ukraine, and Canada will continue to stand with Ukraine as it fights Russia’s illegal and unjustifiable war.

The Leopard 2 is a third generation German main battle tank. Developed by Krauss-Maffei in the 1970s, the tank entered service in 1979 and replaced the earlier Leopard 1 as the main battle tank of the West German army. Various iterations of the Leopard 2 continue to be operated by the armed forces of Germany, as well as 13 other European countries, and several non-European states around the world, including Canada, Chile, Indonesia, and Singapore. Canada bought 12 2A4s/Pz 87 from Switzerland for the ‘Force Mobility Enhancement’ project which, along with the remaining unused ex-Dutch tanks, saw 18 converted to Armoured Engineering Vehicles and 4 converted to Armoured Recovery Vehicles. Canada has also purchased 15 2A4s from Germany as Logistic Stock Vehicles. Canada purchased 20 Leopard 2A6s from the Netherlands. These were delivered in 2007.

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