The Ministry of Defence has released its tender specifications for a new model of Infantry Fighting Vehicles which are set to replace its aging BVP-2s. Four pre-selected companies were invited to the negotiations on Wednesday and the ministry hopes to choose the supplier for its most expensive contract yet by the onset of September.
The Ministry of Defence on Wednesday revealed terms for a new tender for
210 tracked vehicles worth some 53 billion crowns, the largest single order
in Czech military history.
Four European manufacturers were invited to submit bids to supply the infantry fighting vehicles: BAE Systems, General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS), PSM and Rheinmetall Landsysteme.
Minister of Defence Lubomír Metnar said price will be the decisive factor.
One condition is that a significant part of production and servicing take place in conjunction with VOP CZ, a Czech state enterprise run by the ministry.
Representatives of Parliament, the Ministry of Defence and resistance
fighters have honoured the memory of anti-Nazi resistance fighter Václav
Morávek. The rememberance act took place in Prague’s Dejvice district,
where Morávek was shot 77 years ago.
The act took place without the Czechoslovak Freedom Fighters (CSBS) a group which has garnered controversy in recent years due to some of the comments made by its leader Jaroslav Vodička and the fact that its membership base includes former Communist State Security operatives. Both the Senate and the Defence ministry have recently distanced themselves from the group.
General Milan Píka, whose father also held that rank and was executed following a Communist Party-orchestrated show trial, has died at the age of 96. Himself punished on false charges, the World War II veteran nonetheless managed to rise to the top of the Czechoslovak military – and eventually clear his father’s good name.
Czechs are looking back at 20 years in NATO. Their country joined the Alliance together with Hungary and Poland on March 12, 1999. Since then NATO has grown significantly and undertaken several major international military operations. Vít Pohanka highlights the most important developments in the Alliance over that time and how the Czech Republic participated in them.
At a ceremony marking the Czech Republic’s entry to NATO twenty years ago, Czech Foreign Minister Tomáš Petříček handed out medals of merit to 14 people who assisted the country in preparing for membership and meeting its new obligations. The laureates included key players on the international scene at the time as well as Czech diplomats and military officials who worked hard to make it happen.
The Czech Republic is looking back at twenty years of NATO membership, the security guarantees it provides and the challenges it presents for the Czech Armed Forces. Vít Pohanka spoke to General Petr Pavel, former chairman of the NATO Military Committee, about the importance of membership, present-day threats to the Alliance and its uneasy relationship with Russia.
In the spring of 1989, the dissident Václav Havel was in prison and the Czechoslovak army was preparing for a possible clash with Western imperialists under the banner “With the Soviet Union forever.” A decade later, on March 12, 1999, President Havel presided over the Czech Republic’s entry into the NATO military alliance, embracing the collective security while noting it would not come without sacrifice.
Twenty years ago this Tuesday, the Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary became the first former Eastern Bloc countries to join NATO, with Slovakia entering five years later, when all four joined the EU. The anniversary will be marked with pomp and circumstance, honours for those who made the ultimate sacrifice, and debate over how to face new threats to collective security.
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