Krab Howitzers in Sulechów Already. Polish MoD: It’s Only the Beginning
A battery of Krab self-propelled howitzers was handed off to the 5th Artillery Regiment based in Sulechów last Monday. – It’s only the beginning – stressed Mariusz Błaszczak, the head of the Polish MoD, also recalling the fact that by the end of the year the Regiment would be receiving a complete artillery squadron - another two batteries.
5th “Lubuski” Artillery Regiment based in Sulechów has received a battery consisting of 8 155 mm Krab self-propelled howitzers, along with the auxiliary vehicles. The above quantity constitutes one third of the first series manufactured (and second - overall) of the Regina DMO elements that are being introduced into the inventory of the Polish military.
– A single battery is only the beginning. It is expected that another battery will be delivered to the 5th Artillery Regiment in mid-2019 and another one towards the end of this year – Błaszczak recalled, handing a symbolic set of Krab keys to the soldiers.
Head of the Polish Ministry of Defence was praising the troops based in Sulechów. – And I hope that the 5th Artillery Regiment troops won’t be training solely within ranges located in the Lubuskie voivodeship but, similarly to the troops assigned to other Polish military units, they would also engage in training within other ranges – the Minister said. He also stressed that exercises as such would soon become a standard practice. Thus it should not be a surprise to meet the soldiers and their equipment on the move, around the domestic road network.
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Błaszczak said that Krab sphs constitute a clear reinforcement of the capabilities remaining at hand of the Polish military. The Minister was stressing the fact that Krab system is a highlight that Poland can brag about abroad, and that is proven. The system acs a “realistic deterrent against the potential aggressor”, Błaszczak noted.
During the Monday event held in Sulechów, the 2nd Self-Propelled Artillery Squadron also received the 9th Heavy Artillery Regiment banner financed by the Pyzdry municipality community.
The 5th “Lubuski” Artillery Regiment based in Sulechów is subordinated to the 12th Mechanized Division the staff of which has its HQ located in Szczecin. The unit, so far, has been operating the 152 mm Dana and 122 mm 2S1 Gvozdika self-propelled howitzers, along with WR-40 Langusta and BM-21 rocket launch systems.
The first Krab vehicles have been transferred to the 11th “Mazurski” Artillery Regiment based in Węgorzewo and subordinated to the 16th Mechanized Division stationed in Białobrzegi.
HSW S.A. company is the main contractor delivering the Regina modules. However, the project also involves other Polish defence companies, including WB Electronics for instance. The contract, worth PLN 4.5 billion, concerning delivery of four squadrons, was signed in December 2016. The agreement is perceived as the most significant contract ever to have been signed with involvement of the domestic industry.
Each and every Regina squadron includes 24 Krab howitzers and auxiliary platforms: 3 command/staff vehicles, 8 command vehicles (assigned to different levels), 6 ammunition carriers and a single armament/electronics repair vehicle.
The Sulechów-based element has now received 8 howitzer, 1 command/staff vehicle for the squadron commander, 3 command vehicles assigned to the battery and platoon commanders, two ammunition carriers and a single armament/electronics repair vehicle.