Some 55 Ukrainian soldiers are completing a month-long training in Spain this week in the use of Leopard 2 tanks, which some Western allies have delivered or promised to Ukraine, Madrid announced Monday.
The Ukrainians, who arrived in Spain in mid-February, are due to leave for Poland on Wednesday before heading to Ukraine and the front, a Spanish government source said.
They have been training 12 hours a day and six days a week at the San Gregorio military base in the northeastern Spanish city of Zaragoza, Spanish Captain Contreras, who did not want to give his first name, said during a visit to the press.
Done with tanks in training camps, or with simulators, this training, mainly practical, technical and tactical, is part of the military assistance given by European Union countries to Ukraine.
Aged 21 to 60, with previous experience in tank combat, these soldiers are “eager to return to their country”, and will do so “with a more than acceptable knowledge of the German Leopard 2A4 battle tanks”, Contreras stressed.
“Although the battle tanks are different, there are a lot of similar systems, and that makes it a lot easier,” he stressed.
According to Captain Contreras, the Ukrainian soldiers said the Leopard tanks “have superior capabilities to the ones they have used before and to the ones they face” on the Russian side.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced in February that he was sending six Leopard 2A4 tanks to Ukraine, and possibly four more later.
Other Western countries such as Poland, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Canada have delivered or promised Leopard tanks to Ukraine to counter the Russian invasion.