Rwanda displays new self-propelled artillery


Rwanda has acquired SH3 122 mm self-propelled artillery systems from China, and displayed them during a recent exercise.

A single Norinco SH3 was seen on 10 November during the Hard Punch II field training exercise, according to photos released by the Presidency.

IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly notes that this is possibly one of six unidentified large-calibre artillery platforms China exported to Rwanda in 2007, according to the UN Register of Conventional Arms.

The tracked SH3 weighs 24.5 tons and uses the chassis of the Type 97 infantry fighting vehicle. It is armed with a variant of the Type 96 howitzer, based the Soviet D-30 howitzer, and a 12.7 mm machinegun.

The Rwanda Defence Force (RDF) also operate 2S1 self-propelled howitzers armed with 122 mm D-30-derived guns.

During Exercise Hard Punch in November 2016, Rwanda displayed for the first time ATMOS 2000 155 mm self-propelled howitzers from Israel’s Soltam.

The Rwanda Presidency said that President Paul Kagame attended Hard Punch II at RDF Combat Training Centre Gabiro. The event demonstrated how different military capabilities are integrated and synchronized during a military operation at the level of an Infantry Division.

The President said that the exercise was part of the RDF’s ongoing structural transformation aimed at building an increasingly capable and professional force, able to achieve its mandated mission.

Also seen during the exercise were howitzers, an RM70 multiple rocket launcher, target drone and an Mi-24 helicopter firing rockets.