The Algerian Defense Ministry has received another batch of Russian T-90SA tanks, reports the Russian news outlet the Military Review.
The Russian tanks reportedly arrived at the Algerian port of Oran on a ship that departed from the Russian port of Ust-Luga on the Baltic Sea. The arrival date was not specified, but the delivery was scheduled for January 8, 2020. The number of tanks in the batch is not known.
According to the blog BMPD, the T-90SA tanks were probably delivered to Algeria on a new contract, about which only unofficial reports have surfaced. Russia’s previous shipments of tanks for contracts in 2006, 2011 and 2014 were completed successfully.
The armed forces of Algeria currently possess 508 Russian T-90SA tanks produced by UralVagonZavod. Only India has more Russian tanks.
The T-90SA tank for Algeria is an upgraded version of the T-90S tank model which was created for India in 1999. During the upgrades, the tanks were fitted with air conditioning, a cooling system for the night vision devices, as well as an upgraded laser radiation detection system. The tanks were tested in Algeria in 2005, after which the first supply contract was signed in 2006. In 2016, Shtora-1 electro-optical active protection systems were installed on the Algerian T-90SA tanks.
Apart from the T-90SA, Algeria also has T-72M1 tanks which were modernized with Russia’s help. The new model received an anti-air machine gun and a Sosna-U scope.
In 2017, there were reports that Algeria had signed a contract to purchase BMPT-72 tank support vehicles from Russia. The vehicles’ primary task is to escort and protect T-90SA tanks.