Sweden will continue to stand with Ukraine. Last week the Scandinavian nation announced that it had adopted a new amendment to provide Ukraine with financial support and equipment in response to Russia’s unprovoked invasion. As part of a new aid package, Stockholm will provide the Ukrainian military with a variety of weapon systems.
“The Government proposes that Sweden donate additional defence material to Ukraine in the form of the RBS 17 anti-ship missile system, AG 90 anti-materiel sniper rifles and ammunition, and an additional 5,000 Swedish AT4 recoilless anti-tank weapons,” according to a statement released by the Swedish defense ministry.
In addition to the man-portable anti-tank weapons and sniper rifles, Sweden – which is currently seeking NATO membership – also announced that it would provide Ukraine with more economic aid and military equipment that included anti-ship missiles.
This was the third military aid package that Stockholm has provided to Ukraine since Russia invaded in February. The aid comes as Sweden’s Defence Minister Peter Hultqvist has warned he doesn’t expect the fighting in Ukraine to end soon.
“I see this conflict as a long-running conflict,” he told reporters on the sidelines of the GLOBSEC 2022 Bratislava Forum, a foreign policy gathering, Reuters reported. “We must be sustainable in deliveries, so we can come back with more later on. Different countries must be complementary to each other.”
Sweden had also contributed approximately 48 million euros (51.44 million USD) to the National Bank of Ukraine’s special fundraising account to help the country’s armed forces earlier this spring. The Swedish government now proposes a EUR55 million ($58.95 million USD) additional financial contribution to the fund. Furthermore, Stockholm has announced plans to donate SEK 60 million ($6.16 million USD) to the NATO-created fund to assist Ukraine’s military forces.
Russian Tanks Watch Out
Sweden has already supplied some 10,000 AT4 anti-tank weapons. It is a series of 84mm (3.31-inch) unguided, man-portable, single-shot, disposable, recoilless smoothbore anti-tank weapons that were developed by Förenade Fabriksverken (FFV) and manufactured at their facility at Zakrisdal, Karlstad, Sweden. Now produced by Saab Bofors Dynamics, the AT4 is one of the most common light anti-tank weapons used by militaries in the world.
It can be operated by a single soldier, and depending on the particular rocket model, the AT4 has a range of 200 to 600 meters, and it can penetrate armor up to 460mm.
Along with other man-portable anti-tank weapons – including the United States-made FM-148 Javelin and British-produced NLAW – the AT4 has been credited with destroying a large number of Russian T-72 tanks.
The AG 90 Anti-Material Rifle
An undisclosed number of AG 90 rifles will also be headed to Ukraine. The AG 90 is the Swedish designation of the American Barrett M82 .50 caliber (12.7mm) anti-material sniper rifle. The semi-automatic proved highly effective during Operation Desert Storm, the 1991 Persian Gulf War.
The recoil-operated, semi-automatic rifle has a muzzle velocity of 2,799 feet per second, and an effective range of nearly 2,000 yards (1,800 meters). It is fed from either a five or 10-round detachable box magazine. It can be used against small watercraft, radar equipment, missile launchers, and stationary enemy aircraft – and soon quite possibly Russian officers.
Now a Senior Editor for 1945, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer who has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers and websites. He regularly writes about military hardware, and is the author of several books on military headgear including A Gallery of Military Headdress, which is available on Amazon.com. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes.