Latvia, Austria sign howitzer agreement
Latvia has signed an agreement with Austria for the purchase of type M109A5Oe self-propelled howitzers, the Latvian Ministry of Defence announced on 27 April.
The agreement includes 47 howitzers along with fire control centre and training platforms. Each unit will cost €60,000 to €140,000 depending on the configuration.
The howitzers will further improve indirect fire support capabilities of the Latvian armed forces and improve their ability to fully engage in NATO operations and training activities.
The howitzers were fully modernised between 2003 and 2007 and then mothballed.
The M109A5Oe type A howitzer is an upgraded version of the legacy A2/A3 type howitzers, equipped with 39 calibre M185 barrel. Howitzers have a range of 22km when standard ammunition is used, and the upgraded version can reach 30km range.
Latvian personnel are currently in Austria to undergo training on howitzer operation. The first artillery units will be delivered to Latvia this autumn.
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