Ukrainian soldiers have completed their Challenger 2 main battle tank training in the UK, the British Ministry of Defence announced.
Following the upskilling, the tank crews returned to Ukraine to defend against Russian forces.
The course began in January, shortly after the British government committed to supplying Ukraine with 14 Challenger vehicles, related spare parts, and ammunition.
The training took place over several weeks and consisted of operation and assault training, including maneuvering, command, and cooperation to intercept targets.
“It is truly inspiring to witness the determination of Ukrainian soldiers having completed their training on British Challenger 2 tanks on British soil,” UK Defence Secretary Ben Wallace stated.
“They return to their homeland better equipped, but to no less danger. We will continue to stand by them and do all we can to support Ukraine for as long as it takes.”
Effective Use of Challengers Secured
According to the UK, the additional Challenger 2 integration into the Ukrainian Armed Forces enhances its capability to protect warfighters, as the tanks offer the “most modern and sophisticated gunnery systems.”
“It has been a privilege for the Combat Manoeuvre Centre team to deliver this training to our Ukrainian partners,” Challenger Training Mission’s Lt. Col. John Stone said.
“We have all been hugely impressed with the level of competence displayed and have no doubt that our friends will use the Challenger 2 tanks most effectively in the battles to come as they fight to defend their homeland.”
Providing Heavy Tanks to Ukraine
Earlier this week, British Challenger 2s were delivered to Ukraine.
The tranche is expected to bolster Ukraine’s offensive this spring against Russian troops.
It was shipped alongside Leopard main battle tanks promised by Germany, which in February announced a plan to send half a battalion of Leopard 2s to Ukraine.