Pak requests Ukraine to provide 200 Zaslon defensive equipment
New Delhi, March 1 (IANS) Pakistan has approached Ukraine for the procurement of 200 units of Zaslon Active Protection System and to integrate them with its existing fleet of tanks, top sources in the defence industry said.
The Pakistan Army has asked Ukraine’s state-owned State Foreign Trade Enterprise (SFTE) ‘SpetsTechnoExport’ to supply 200 units the new defensive equipment.
Zaslon Active Protection System protects stand-alone fixed or moving targets against anti-tank weapons of all types, including hand-held anti-tank grenade launchers, anti-armor projectiles, anti-tank guided missile, and armor-piercing and shaped-charge artillery rounds approaching their targets at 70 to 1,200 metres/second.
“It also detects incoming threats at shortest required ranges, provides enhanced countermeasures resistance, and is almost invisible, operating with a high degree of efficiency on the battlefield,” said the source.
Pakistan has also requested the SFTE to conduct a technological presentation in a situation close to combat and have four units of the Zalson APS available for testing at a demo site in Ukraine. “After successful trails/demo, Pakistan Army will place an order for serial production of the system by August 2021,” sources said.
Zalson APS is a radar-based system which provides 150 to 180-degree wide coverage and has capability of defeating incoming projectiles.
Earlier, Turkey had approached the Ukraine state-owned company for Zaslon active protection system for M60 tanks.
Turkey added the active protection systems to its tanks as its armored units suffered losses at the hands Kurdish and and ISIS fighters.
Turkey went for 120 complete active protection systems to for its three platforms — M60A3, M60T and Leopard 2A4 tanks. Turkish company Aselsan has also obtained a licence from Ukraine’s Microtek to produce a version of their Zaslon-L system, which it calls the Akkor Pulat.
Aselsan indigenises the Ukrainian system in accordance with the technical and export liaison agencies of the two countries, the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TAceBAoTAK) and Ukrainian UkrOboronService.
It was originally developed in the early 2000s. The system was evaluated by Ukraine on the Polish Andres tank and the Indian T-90A. However, Zaslon was not selected in any of them.
Now, seeing the platform is being successfully used by Turkey, the Pakistan Army has decided to procure the defensive system.
(Sumit Kumar Singh can be reached at email@example.com)