​Britain Sends More AS90 Artillery to Ukraine, What’s Special About It

The AS90 self-propelled artillery units / Photo credit: The Ministry of Defense
The AS90 self-propelled artillery units / Photo credit: The Ministry of Defense

New Defense Secretary ensures continued support with artillery units, demining equipment, ammunition and more

The Government of the United Kingdom announced a new tranche of military aid for Ukraine, which includes critically important items. The announcement on July 7, following a visit by the Defense Minister John Healey, who was appointed on July 5 after the resignation of Rishi Sunak’s government.

The new head of the Ministry of Defense promised to increase military support and emphasized that the change in government does not affect the united support for Ukraine in its resistance against russian aggression.

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The new aid package includes ten AS90 self-propelled artillery units, 32 new barrels for them, and other critical spare parts. It is noteworthy that the Government of the United Kingdom had already announced the transfer of about 30 AS90 systems back in January 2023. As of July, it was reported that the training of the second group of Ukrainian artillerymen had successfully concluded, and London had not reported on similar steps since.

Given this, it is likely that these are additional AS90 systems, not the ones announced at the beginning of 2023. This also aligns with the fact that in early May 2024, British forces conducted the last shootings with the AS90 systems, signaling the soon-to-be decommissioning of all these artillery units. According to unofficial information, about 30 more units remain.

The United Kingdom is replacing the AS90 systems with German RCH 155 self-propelled artillery units, which are also ordered for Ukraine, and has temporarily ordered Swedish Archer units. However, the decision to continue transferring the AS90 systems indicates that the British Army is left with a minimum of 155 mm artillery, as only 14 Archer units have been ordered, and the RCH 155 systems are expected to start arriving closer to 2030.

The aid package announced by the Government of the United Kingdom also includes: 50 small military boats to support river and coastal operations; 40 demining vehicles; 61 bulldozers to help build defensive positions; A quarter of a million of 50 caliber ammunition; 90 Brimstone missiles.

Read more: Ammunition, Artillery and Brimstone Missiles: Britain Announces New Aid Package for Ukraine