Bangladesh Army Special Forces adopt Spanish anti-tank rocket launchers

Bangladesh Army Special Forces adopt Spanish anti-tank rocket launchers

The Bangladesh Army has for the first time standardised the Spanish Alcotan-100 recoilless man-portable single-use anti-tank rocket launchers for the Special Forces Paracommando Brigade and airborne Para-Infantry Battalions.

Manufactured by Instalaza, the Alcotan-100 was touted to be procured by the Bangladesh Army since 2016 as a replacement for older anti-tank weapons such as Type 69-1 RPGs and 106mm recoilless rifles from China and South Korea.

The Alcotan-100 (M2) has finally been approved for procurement, with a total of 160 anti-armour and anti-bunker rockets to be procured along with 80 electro-optic and VOSEL (M2) fire control units to be procured.

Unlike the previously planned acquisition of Carl Gustaf M4 recoilless anti-tank weapon system, the Alcotan-100 (M2) can be fired from confined spaces, making it ideal for urban warfare, particularly useful for the Special Forces, which is known to be deployed in counter-terrorism operations or raids against fortified enemy structures.

According to Instalaza, the 100 calibre weapon system comprises of a reusable firing unit named VOSEL (M2), with integrated night vision, which calculates the target position and trajectory. It also measures the propellant temperature, calculates the projectile trajectory, and shows the gunner the future aiming point to maximise the hit probability.

The weapon system can fire a range of different ammunition including anti-tank, dual-purpose, anti-bunker, and multi-purpose integrated into a disposable launching tube.

The effective range of the solid-fuel rockets is between 30 m to 600 m (1,000 m against area targets) making it extremely potent in an urban setting.

Instalaza claims their weapon system has no recoil and is highly portable in transport configuration weighing a maximum of 10 kg.

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The manufacturer is also supplying indoor SAARA simulators, field-use subcalibre weapons, and training ammunition.

As reported earlier, the infantry is set to be equipped with German-made RGW90 anti-tank weapons to replace the Type 69-1 RPGs at the platoon level, while battalions have already been equipped with NORINCO’s PF-98 anti-tank rocket launchers.

The variance allows greater flexibility, improved firepower while reducing the enemy’s capability to resist the array of weapons threats.

The Bangladesh Army is improving its weapons and equipment with the introduction is very sophisticated kits from both Western and Eastern sources. In recent times it acquired the AK-15 assault rifles for the infantry and Special Forces. New tanks, attack helicopters, missile systems, watercraft, and vehicles are also being purchased to ensure the completion of Forces Goal 2030 of the military modernization blueprint.

The Government of Bangladesh has made it a priority to maintain a combat-ready fighting force to ensure self-defence and protect Bangladesh’s sovereignty and national interests.

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