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    First batch of US Abrams tanks arrived in Poland

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    The first 14 M1A1 Abrams tanks have just been unloaded at the port of Szczecin, marking the beginning of a new era for the Polish army. One battalion, consisting of an impressive 58 machines, is scheduled to be delivered by the end of 2023.

    The Abrams tanks, previously owned by the United States Marine Corps, have been suitably modified to meet the requirements of the Polish Army. As part of these modifications, the composite armour was also upgraded, replacing it with more advanced armour and in line with Foreign Military Sales export procedures.

    The first delivery of 14 tanks, or one company, is only the beginning. The Minister of Defence has announced the delivery of a further two companies later this year, which will create a full battalion of tanks. Another battalion is expected to be delivered next year. The first battalion of Abrams tanks will reinforce the 1st Warsaw Armoured Brigade, which is currently armed with Leopard tanks, part of the 18th Mechanised Division.

    The deliveries of the latest generation of M1A1 SEPv3 tanks, planned for next year, are another step in the modernisation of the Polish army. Deliveries were initially expected to begin in 2025-2026, but there is a possibility that the dates could be brought forward.

    The contract signed by the Ministry of Defence in April 2022 is for the delivery of 250 M1A2 SEPv3 tanks, which are the latest generation of these machines. These tanks are equipped with 120mm cannon, 7.62mm and 12.7mm guns. Each vehicle weighs 70 tonnes and is powered by a 1,500hp turbine engine.

    However, the contract is not limited to the supply of tanks. It also includes ammunition, pontoon parks, technical security vehicles, training simulators and a logistics package. The value of the contract is $4 billion 750 million and deliveries are expected to be completed in 2026.

    This significant modernisation of the Polish army is the result of long-term efforts and cooperation between the United States and Poland. Strengthening the country’s defence capabilities through the introduction of advanced Abrams tanks will contribute to maintaining stability and security in the region.

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