The President of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, signed Law 14,449/22 that authorizes the transfer to Uruguay of ten 105mm M-108 self-propelled howitzers and 11 Engesa EE-11 Urutu armored vehicles. In this way, the negotiations that began more than a year ago are concluded, as Infodefensa.com exclusively reported at the time.
The law, approved by Brazil’s Congress and ratified by Bolsonaro, specifies that the units will be transferred to their current state of conservation. Transfer costs are borne by the Brazilian state. The aforementioned units no longer meet the requirements of the Brazilian army, therefore, their transfer will not affect its operational capabilities, Brazil says.
High level of operability and conservation
Last December, a delegation from the Uruguayan Army visited the 22nd Self-Propelled Field Artillery Group of the Brazilian Army in the city of Uruguayan, where the Uruguayan troops were able to assess the condition of the vehicles. This visit was highly satisfactory, finding a high level of operability as well as a perfect state of conservation of the units.
The armored vehicles will be transferred to the Brazilian city of Santana do Livramento, on the border with Uruguay, where they will be handed over to the Army. It is speculated that the Urutu operate locally in patrol and training tasks since they no longer qualify to be deployed in United Nations peacekeeping missions due to their seniority. Uruguay is a user of the other two best-known products of the defunct Brazilian factory Engesa: the EE-9 Cascavel and the EE-3 Jararaca.
M-108 will replace M-101
For their part, the M-108 howitzers will serve to equip a new group of self-propelled artillery and with their reception, there was speculation about the possibility of beginning to decommission the old M-101 howitzers.
However, the long life remaining in these systems due to their relatively low usage will allow them to be kept in stock, even if only in reserve. With the existence of various upgrade kits, the system could continue to be valid in the region.
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