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​France to Deliver More Caesar Howitzers to Ukraine

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The French Nexter CAESAR (8×8) 155 mm/52 calibre artillery system is based on a Tatra 8×8 chassis with a protected forward control cab
The French Nexter CAESAR (8×8) 155 mm/52 calibre artillery system is based on a Tatra 8×8 chassis with a protected forward control cab

These can be self-propelled artillery based on the Tatra T815-7 chassis with an 8x8 wheel formula, not 6x6, which are currently in the Armed Forces Ukraine

France is preparing to deliver a new batch of Caesar self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine.

That’s according to Le Monde, Ukrinform reports.

Read more: ​British L119 105mm Howitzer is Already in Ukraine: Military Told About its Advantages Over the Soviet D-30

"According to our information, France is preparing to deliver to Ukraine a new series of Caesar guns, forwarded from the order originally intended for Denmark. This delivery may refer to six to 12 howitzers out of the 15 requested by Kyiv," the newspaper wrote, noting that the delivery will be the subject of lengthy negotiations.

The Armed Forces fire from CAESAR self-propelled howitzer, France to Deliver More Caesar Howitzers to Ukraine, Defense Express
The Armed Forces fire from CAESAR self-propelled howitzer / Photo credit: Ministry of Defense of Ukraine

Although technical discussions are being finalized, the maneuver is subject to a political agreement in principle between the three governments. This became known during the talks over the recent weeks between President Emmanuel Macron of France, his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky, and Prime Minister of Denmark Mette Frederiksen, the report reads.

The publication notes that the operation is unprecedented and complicated for the French authorities. “The equipment that Paris is committed to delivering to Kyiv was originally intended for Denmark as part of an order for 15 units placed in 2017, supplemented by four more guns in 2019, supplied by their manufacturer Nexter. Copenhagen would all the more agree to give up some of the equipment at this stage, as it is still in the process of technical inspection, or even not all of it meets the specifications set by the Danes. After some hesitation, Ukraine, whose leadership is satisfied with the effectiveness of the Caesars, is ready to take the equipment and employ it as it is. Neither the Elysee Palace nor the Ministry of the Armed Forces wished to comment on the operation," the publication notes.

The French Nexter CAESAR (8×8) 155 mm/52 calibre artillery system is based on a Tatra 8×8 chassis with a protected forward control cab, France to Deliver More Caesar Howitzers to Ukraine, Defense Express
The French Nexter CAESAR (8×8) 155 mm/52 calibre artillery system is based on a Tatra 8×8 chassis with a protected forward control cab

It adds that, having been warned by his staff, Macron would in any case refuse to take the new Caesars from the French army stock, which has already been reduced after 18 guns were supplied in the spring and early summer: the contingent sent to Ukraine is almost a quarter of the total available to the regular army, which is 76 units.

At the same time, the article notes, Kyiv will not lose out on the replacement: "While Danish Caesars are a heavier model than that of the French army (32 tonnes versus 18 tonnes), they are also more powerful: installed on an eight-wheeler instead of a six-wheel base, they are able to carry up to 36 shells instead of 18, while the cabin has more protective armor."

The Caesar is a perfect tool for counter-battery warfare, as well as for detecting and destroying enemy artillery before it detects you," a military source emphasizes.

The publication notes that in the best case, President Macron could outline the main aspects of the operation on Monday, October 3, during a meeting in Berlin with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, at least if the latter by that time recovers from the Covid-19 infection that forced him to self-isolate in recent days.

It is worth noting that when we talk about the French CAESAR self-propelled guns for Denmark, we are talking about systems based on the Tatra T815-7 chassis with an 8x8 wheel formula, and not 6x6, which are currently in the Armed Forces.

This self-propelled howitzer was introduced in 2015, received an updated weapon control system, as well as a new automated charging system, with which the crew of the self-propelled gun is 2-3 people. However, there is also an option of semi-automatic charging, but the crew increases to 4-5 people.

The maximum firing range is up to 55 km with the VLAP shell, it can carry twice as much ammunition as the previous version - up to 36 shells. Rate of fire - up to 8 shots per minute, or three shots in 15 seconds in rapid fire mode.

Defense Express reported erlier on How Ukrainian Artillerymen Use Western PzH 2000, CAESAR Self-Propelled Howitzers. We also wrote that French CAESAR Self-Propelled Gun Have Already Destroyed 80 Enemy Artillery Systems.

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