The Syrian Army has received a large number of modern Russian-made UAZ Patriot pickups, an informed source in the Russian Defense Ministry said, stressing that the vehicles will initiate a major enhancement in the government troops’ combat capability.
Komsomolskaya Pravda daily reported that Moscow has sent these modern UAZ Patriot pickups to Syria in response to the move done by several Middle-Eastern Arab states that have equipped terrorist groups in Syria with over 60,000 modern military vehicles.
“The UAZ Patriot pickups, equipped with Kord 12.7 mm heavy machineguns and AGS-17 grenade launchers, have been dispatched to Syria to enable the government forces to better stand clashes with the terrorist groups as they give operators a fire power 2 kilometers in radius. Additionally, if needed, the vehicle can be equipped with Konkurs or Kornet anti-tank missiles, capable of hitting enemy targets at distances of up to 5 km. It can also be fitted with a 120 mm mortar launcher with an effective range of 9 km,” Komsomolskaya Pravda daily quoted the Russian Defense Ministry source as saying.
“The weapons can be mounted onboard a rotary turret, allowing the operator to instantaneously change his arc of fire, the source further added.
He added that the gas-powered vehicles feature upgraded all-terrain capabilities, a one ton carrying capacity, and armor protection. They also feature power plugs for night vision, special tents for protection against shrapnel, and storage for ammunition.
The vehicles are likely to be assigned to protect humanitarian convoys.
Experts suggest the new vehicles may replace or play a good complementary role for the UAZ-3132 Gusar, already engaged in Syria and used for operations by the Russian Special Forces.
Military analyst Igor Korotchenko told Komsomolskaya Pravda that the pickups will enable users “to engage in agile urban combat, attack and pursue the enemy in the desert, cover humanitarian convoys, which are regularly shelled, on the roads of Syria, and deliver ammunition to friendly checkpoints.”
The Russian trucks were sent to Syria after Toyota customers’ list in the Middle East showed that Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UAE and Jordan were involved in purchasing 60,000 Toyota pickup trucks that were supplied to the ISIL terrorists in Syria and Iraq.
After photos of hundreds of ISIL’s Toyota pickups seized or targeted by the Syrian Army were sent by the Russian army to the Toyota Company in Japan, the company revealed a list of its main customers that have bought the vehicles.
The customers’ list shows that a Saudi firm has purchased a sum of 22,500 trucks, Qatar 32,000, the UAE 11,650 and the Jordanian Army 4,500 vehicles from Toyota company. The Jordanian Army had received loans from several Saudi banks for payments.
A large number of the purchased-vehicles by the four Arab countries have already been delivered to the ISIL terrorists in Syrian and Iraq.
Informed sources have confirmed that ISIL has received over 60,000 Toyota vehicles.
The US official had previously announced that they want to conduct a probe to find out that how ISIL had received these vehicles, but analysts said further that Washington itself had been involved in export of hundreds of these pickup trucks to Syria.