Algeria Acquires Chinese Self-Propelled Howitzers

Algeria has received a batch of PLZ-45 or Type 88 155mm self-propelled howitzers designed by the China North Industries Corporation, reports the Moscow-based Center for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies on Jan. 20.

Photos on the Algerian military website ForcesDZ show the PLZ-45s in transport on a highway in Blida, located about 45 kilometers southwest of Algiers, the nation's capital, on Jan. 14. It is claimed that the self-propelled howitzers were on their way to a base of the People's National Army of Algeria.
The PLZ-45 is equipped with a 155mm, 45-calibre main gun, with a semi-automatic loader and an electrically controlled and hydraulically operated rammer. Designed by the Harbin First Machinery Group Corporation, part of the China North Industries Corporation, the PLZ-45 has already been exported to various nations including Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

Some military analysts said that the Chinese 155mm self-propelled howitzers seen in Algeria may in fact be PLZ-52s. While both vehicles use the same chassis, the PLZ-52 is equipped with a 155mm 52-caliber barrel to increase the range of fire, the analyst said. [via]

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