A Turkish automotive company will export a total of 46 defense vehicles to Tunisia, Anadolu Agency (AA) reported Friday. BMC will export 41 Kirpi (Hedgehog) mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles and five Kirpi 4×4 ambulances to Tunisia.
Shipments of the vehicles will be made in batches in the coming months. With this deal, the number of vehicles that BMC has recently put into use in Tunisia will reach 92. Tunisia will become the country with the largest Kirpi fleet after Turkey. Additionally, this will be the first sale of the Kirpi 4×4 ambulance outside Turkey.
A mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) vehicle, Kirpi was developed by BMC for Turkey’s Land Forces Command requirements. The vehicle has a shielded position for a gunner on top of the roof, which is operated manually and can rotate 360 degrees. The MRAP can be armed with a 7.62 mm or a 12.7 mm machine gun. The vehicle is also available with a remote-controlled weapons station. Furthermore, there are numerous firing ports provided for troops where most of them have associated vision blocks.
The defense cooperation between Turkey and Tunisia has grown in recent years. In 2019, under the coordination of Turkey’s Presidency of Defense Industries (SSB), five local defense firms exported $150 million (TL 1.14 billion) worth of products to Tunisia. The products include Turkish Aerospace Industries’ (TAI) Anka medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs); BMC’s Kirpi MRAP vehicles; Nurol Makina’s Ejder Yalçın armored vehicles; various Katmerciler vehicles, such as tankers and tanks, and Turkish defense giant ASELSAN’s electro-optic systems.
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