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《TAIPEI TIMES》 US delivered Stinger missiles: sources

Missile trucks fire Stinger missiles at targets during a live-fire missile exercise at Pingtung County’s Manzhou Township on July 4 last year.
Photo: Lo Pei-te, Taipei Times

Missile trucks fire Stinger missiles at targets during a live-fire missile exercise at Pingtung County’s Manzhou Township on July 4 last year. Photo: Lo Pei-te, Taipei Times

2024/02/04 03:00

DEFENSE: Army Command Headquarters has set aside NT$7.26bn to purchase 250 missiles, 108 gripstock-control groups and 108 transponders from 2019 to next year

By Lo Tien-pin and Jake Chung / Staff reporter, with staff writer

Part of a package of man-portable air-defense (MANPAD) Stinger missile systems was delivered to Taiwan last year, sources familiar with the issue said yesterday.

Capital defense units, such as the Military Police, the Marine Corps and the army’s special forces units, were prioritized to receive the weapons, which were authorized by the US’ National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to boost Taiwan’s self-defense capabilities, the sources said.

The NDAA for the last fiscal year included provisions to provide US$10 billion in grants — US$2 billion over the next five years — for Taiwan to buy US-made weapons.

The NDAA also paved the way for 1,000 M240B machine guns, 8,000 sets of combat gear, tethered aerostat radar systems and coastal surface-to-air Harpoon missile systems, the sources said.

While news media have reported that Washington might provide Taiwan with four MQ-9A Reaper drones, the drones need to be paired with real-time ground stations to be 100 percent functional, the sources added.

The M240B guns have a broader range of uses, including on helicopters, combat vehicles, tanks and small boats, they said, adding that Taiwan procured the weapon for use across the military and for the Coast Guard Administration.

The navy has budgeted NT$13.37 billion (US$427.94 million) to purchase 500 additional Stinger missiles, half of which would go to the army and the other half to the Marine Corps or naval vessels, the sources said.

The second batch is expected to be delivered later this year, they said.

A Ministry of National Defense budget showed that Army Command Headquarters has set aside NT$7.26 billion, covering 2019 to next year, for 250 Stinger missiles, 108 gripstock-control groups — which attach to a shoulder-fired guided missile launch tube — and 108 Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) transponders.

Navy Command Headquarters has allotted NT$6.19 billion from 2017 to next year for 250 Stinger missiles, 70 gripstock-control groups and 62 IFF systems.

Department of Strategic Planning director Lee Shih-chiang (李世強) in October last year said that the grip controls for the MANPADs are capable of loading Avenger missiles and missiles used for dual-mounted Stinger systems.

The army ordered the extra grip controls for tactical flexibility, Lee said.

新聞來源:TAIPEI TIMES


US Marines launch a Stinger missile at the Capu Midia Training Range in Romania in 2017.
Photo: AP

US Marines launch a Stinger missile at the Capu Midia Training Range in Romania in 2017. Photo: AP

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