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​Ukraine To Manufacture Czech CZ BREN 2 Assault Rifles Under License

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​Ukraine To Manufacture Czech CZ BREN 2 Assault Rifles Under License

CZ BREN 2 is a modern model of assault rifles, which is already actively used in the Armed Forces of Ukraine

JSC Ukrainian Defense Industry announced that hs signed an agreement with the Czech company Česká zbrojovka a.s. on the licensed production of modern small arms.

The agreement refers to the CZ BREN 2 NATO caliber assault rifle (aka CZ BREN 806), which is in service with the Czech army itself and was also actively supplied to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

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It should be noted that talks about setting up the production of this rifle in Ukraine were held back in the fall of 2023, when the Ministry of Defense of the Czech Republic was officially notified of the start of negotiations. At the same time, it was not only about CZ BREN 2, but also about the creation of a line for the production of Sellier&Bellot cartridges, the localization of Tatra production and the production of projectiles made of polymer materials.

The history of the CZ BREN begins in the 2000s, when this assault rifle was created to replace the vz. 58 - a Czech submachine gun from the time of the Warsaw Pact.

After several attempts failed due to the lack of budget, Česká zbrojovka presented the first version of CZ BREN in 2009. A year later, in 2010, it outperformed FN SCAR-L on a tender, the first supplies began in 2011. Practical experience of application led to the creation of the CZ BREN 2 which got an overhaul based on feedback from soldiers.

Ukraine To Manufacture Czech CZ BREN 2 Assault Rifles Under License, The CZ BREN 2 NATO caliber assault rifle actively supplied to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Defense Express
The CZ BREN 2 NATO caliber assault rifle actively supplied to the Armed Forces of Ukraine

As a result, the weight of the assault rifle dropped 0.5 kg, the bolt action got modernized, the magazine well replaced, disassembling the gun became easier, plus some other minor changes were introduced. The upgraded rifle was immediately adopted by the army.

All versions of CZ BREN have sort of a unique trait: they were designed as a modular weapon: by changing the barrel and magwell insert, you could switch from 5.56×45 mm to 7.62×39 mm or vice versa. On the outside, the CZ BREN 2 looked quite similar to the previously mentioned FN SCAR-L, and both use automatics in their short-stroke piston gas operation system.

Ukraine To Manufacture Czech CZ BREN 2 Assault Rifles Under License, Standard CZ BREN 2, 7,62×51 NATO cartridge / Image credit: Česká zbrojovka, Defense Express
Standard CZ BREN 2, 7,62×51 NATO cartridge / Image credit: Česká zbrojovka

In that gas system feature the CZ BREN 2 is similar to all modern assault rifles that get procured en masse as the unified weapon for the entire army (in contrast to rifles for special forces). For example, the HK416 which is getting bought by by France and Germany – as a replacement for the G36, – or the Polish development called the Grot all have the same short-stroke gas piston.

Apart from the Czech Republic, the transition to CZ BREN 2 also began in Hungary in 2018, where it won over the Grot in the tender. Furthermore, Hungarian HM Arzenal bought technology for local production under license. The value of the 2018 contract was EUR 100 million, according to media reports. The plan was to produce 200,000 guns by 2028.

Thus, for the Czech Republic, this is not the first experience of mass sales of CZ BREN 2 under license.

Ukraine To Manufacture Czech CZ BREN 2 Assault Rifles Under License, CZ BREN 2 in the Czech Army, Defense Express
CZ BREN 2 in the Czech Army / Open source illustrative photo
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