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AP: US to begin Abrams tank training for Ukrainian troops
U.S. officials have said that Ukrainian troops would start to receive Abrams tank training "in the coming weeks," the Associated Press reported on April 21.
According to AP, 31 older M1A1 tank models will be sent to the Grafenwoehr Training Area in Germany by the end of May for the training course, which is set to begin "a couple of weeks" after that.
The training course will last for a total of 10 weeks and upon its completion the 31 M1A1 battle tanks will be sent to the frontline.
Two-hundred-fifty Ukrainian troops will be trained on how to maintain and use the tanks, AP wrote.
Pentagon spokesperson Patrick Ryder confirmed on March 21 that the U.S. would supply Ukraine with 31 M1-A1 Abrams tanks instead of the newer M1-A2 version it had pledged before.
In late January, U.S. President Joe Biden announced that he would be sending Abrams tanks to Ukraine, in response to a call from U.S. lawmakers to provide Kyiv with the tanks. The purpose of this was alleged to pressure Germany into authorizing the delivery of their own Leopard tanks to Ukraine.
Compared with Soviet tanks, which Ukraine and Russia both currently use on the battlefield, the mobility and firepower of Western equipment could help Ukraine launch more effective counteroffensive operations.