Today, the Slovak National Director of Defense Capabilities, Dalibor Pavolka, and his German counterpart, Thomas Frankenberger, signed a donation agreement at the Ministry of Defense of the Slovak Republic, whereby the Federal Republic of Germany will donate two systems to Slovakia. Very Short Range Air Defense MANTIS (VSHORAD) bolsters the country’s air defenses on its eastern border with Ukraine, otherwise protected by domestic and allied GBAD capabilities.

According to Defense Minister Martin Sklenár, the first of the two systems will be supplied to Slovakia in a matter of weeks, although the exact delivery date has yet to be confirmed by the German side. Slovakia will receive the MANTIS systems free of charge and permanently, based on the correct SVK-EU relationship, discussions between experts and the Alliance’s common goal: to strengthen NATO’s eastern defenses, of which Slovakia is a part.

In his statement, Defense Minister Martin Sklenár stated: “The donation of the MANTIS systems to the Slovak Armed Forces is the result of the Allies’ positive reflection on our responsible partnership and our relentless long-term commitment to the benefit of security. National and collective.

In the words of the National Director of Defense Capabilities, Dalibor Pavolka, the MANTIS air defense systems will boost the SVK GBAD’s firepower and its ability to defend our defense infrastructure facilities against air threats.

Each MANTIS system consists of six automatic weapon stations (optionally available with up to eight guns), two sensor units and a command post. The Germany package also includes 3 MANTIS surveillance radars with a range of up to 100 km and specialized training for SVK soldiers. Currently, 44 SVK soldiers are in Germany receiving training on the MANTIS system by the Bundeswehr at the Todendorf Military Training Area (MTA). Upon completion of this training, service personnel will deploy to eastern Slovakia to operate MANTIS systems in defense of the state.

The MANTIS system (Modular, Automatic and Network Capable Targeting and Interception System) is a stationary and fully automated weapons station designed to maintain air defense coverage of military installations 24 hours a day, detecting, tracking and destroying cruise missiles, rockets, artillery and mortar shells and drones. Germany originally developed MANTIS to protect Bundeswehr’s forward operating bases in Afghanistan.

Jason Hovet