Slovakia T-72 tanks handed over to Ukraine spotted in the Donbass

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The T-72M2 tanks that arrived from Slovakia a few days ago have already been spotted in the Donbas.

After Slovakia handed over the T-72M2 tanks that were previously in service to Ukrainian units a few days ago, it became known that these vehicles had already been transferred to the Donbas. A video shared by many users in twitter on which Slovakia T-72M2 tanks can really be seen.

Information about the transfer of T-72M2 tanks by Slovakia was unofficial. However, the fact that this equipment was transferred to Ukraine became known just a few days ago. Nevertheless, if it was assumed that the tanks would be in the central part of Ukraine, it turned out that they were promptly transferred to the eastern direction.

On the presented video frames, you can see military equipment moving through one of the settlements, allegedly in the Donbass. Not only Slovak T-72M2s, but also Ukrainian T-64BM were seen in the convoy. The exact number of tanks transferred to the Donbass is not disclosed, however, according to a number of data, Slovakia could provide Ukraine with up to 24 main battle tanks of this type.

Earlier, Poland also announced its intentions to transfer up to 100 T-72 tanks to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Earlier it was reported that  shortly after Slovakia supplied an S-300 air defense system to Ukraine to support its fight against Russia’s invasion, Slovak Defence Minister Jaroslav Naď has announced his country is in talks with the Ukrainian government over a potential sale of Zuzana 155 mm self-propelled howitzers.

“We are also discussing the possibility of having damaged Ukrainian combat vehicles and T-72 or T-55 tanks come to our territory, and our military repair plants would repair them and send them back to Ukraine,” Naď said, as reported by local news agency SITA.

About T-72M2

The T-72M2 Moderna is a Slovakian upgrade of the Soviet T-72 main battle tank. The T-72M was license-produced in the former Czechoslovakia. It entered service with the Czechoslovakian army in 1981. In the early 1990s after the dissolution of the Czechoslovakia, various upgrade programs were developed both in Czech Republic and Slovakia to keep their fleets of T-72 MBTs operational and combat capable. First prototype of the T-72M2 Moderna was revealed in 1993. Development of this tank is completed. For a number of years this upgrade was actively proposed for Slovak Army as well as export customers. However, it received no production orders. Slovakia never ordered this tank due to funding problems. Only few prototypes were built for trials and evaluation.

T-72M2 Moderna
Slovak T-72M2

   The T-72M2 Moderna has improved protection. The tank is fitted with DYNAS explosive reactive armor. The second prototype is fitted with a cage armor that provides protection against RPG rounds. The tank has a laser warning receiver. It notifies when the tank is illuminated by a laser beam and identifies direction of the threat. Then smoke grenades can be discharged to hide the tank. The tank is fitted with new automatic fire suppression system.

   The tank is fitted with a modernized 2A45MS 125 mm smoothbore gun. The gun is fitted with an autoloader.

   There is a coaxial 7.62 mm machine gun. The first prototype of this tank was fitted with two Swiss 20 mm cannons, mounted on either side of the turret. These could engage air and ground targets. The second prototype was fitted with a single 30 mm cannon, from the Soviet BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicle.

   The tank has got new VEGA fire control system, new ballistic computer and new sensors of Belgian and French origin. Vehicle commander uses panoramic sight. The same sight is used on the French Leclerc, and some other modern MBTs. This tank has got a hunter-killer engagement capability. Once commander spots and identifies the target, he lays the gun and lets the gunner complete all the aiming and firing process. During that time commander looks for the next target.

   This main battle tank has a crew of three, including commander, gunner and driver.

   The tank is fitted with a more powerful S12U turbocharged diesel engine, developing 850 hp. It is a Polish modernized version of the Soviet V-46-6 tank engine. It was used on the Polish PT-91 Twardy main battle tank. Even though upgraded tank is heavier it has improved cross-country mobility over the original T-72M.

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