Austin: Ukraine will receive Abrams tanks in early autumn

Austin: Ukraine will receive Abrams tanks in early autumn

Armor Military assistance Tank Ukraine Ukraine - USA USA War with Russia World

The Armed Forces of Ukraine will receive American Abrams tanks in early autumn. At the same time, training programs for the Ukrainian military on these combat vehicles should be completed.

The U.S. is doing everything possible to speed up the transfer of these tanks.

United States Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin made the announcement on Thursday, Voice of America reports.

“We are doing everything possible to accelerate the delivery of these tanks, and early fall is a projection. We have moved several tanks to the training field for the Ukrainians to start training. By the time the exercise is over, the tanks will be available for use,” the U.S. Secretary of Defense said at a Senate hearing.

Answering the question about whether it was possible to speed up the delivery of 31 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, the head of the Pentagon answered that the American military not only sent tanks to Ukraine and trained the Ukrainian military to work on them, but also created the infrastructure that would support the work of the tanks, which was a new technique for Ukrainians.

“This technique is significantly different, in particular, due to the turbine engine and other rather complex systems. But we are trying to transfer this equipment to the Ukrainians as soon as possible. They will definitely have everything in stock by early fall,” Austin noted.

As previously reported, instead of Abrams M1A2 promised in January of this year, the Defense Forces of Ukraine will receive M1A1 tanks, but sooner.

Initially, it was planned that the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative would fund the transfer and purchase of new tanks from the manufacturer. Now it will be withdrawn from the reserves of the U.S. armed forces. Tank hulls will be refurbished and refitted before shipping.

Last month, the United States announced that it planned to start a training program for Ukrainian crews of M1 Abrams tanks in June this year.

The U.S. Department of Defense officials announced on Friday that the first M1 Abrams tanks for the training of the Ukrainian military were expected to be delivered to Germany by the end of May.

Танк M1A1 Abrams військових США в Іраку. 2005 рік. Фото з відкритих джерел

According to the U.S. officials, about 250 Ukrainian troops will be trained — some of them to operate the tanks while others to repair and maintain them. Additional training for Ukrainians on how to fight and maneuver with the tanks could also be provided after the initial 10 weeks.

According to the official, the training of Ukrainian soldiers and mechanics will be conducted by American instructors from the training command of the Seventh United States Army.

Armor Military assistance Tank Ukraine Ukraine - USA USA War with Russia World