Switzerland blocking Italy’s Leopard-1 tanks transfer to Ukraine – photos

Leopard 1 tanks in the Italian province of Gorizia© The New Voice

Italy purchased around a hundred tanks from the Swiss company RUAG in 2016. They now sit in a yard in Villesse, nearly 2,500 km from the frontline in Ukraine.

Read also: Switzerland to investigate failed attempt to sell Leopard tanks to Ukraine

The fabric-covered tanks have never been displayed publicly before and their combat readiness is unclear. Some seem in good condition, while others show signs of dirt and ageing.

 Video screenshot RSI

The company withheld photos showing the condition, saying many were in “very bad” shape and “unsuitable for war.” Italy believes it would take about 90 days to make them combat-ready.


Germany, the Netherlands, and Denmark intended to purchase these tanks from Switzerland for Kyiv, according to RSI. A contract was set for RUAG to sell Leopard-1 tanks to Germany’s Rheinmetall AG, pending Swiss government approval. However, Swiss “neutrality” legislation has so far prevented this transfer.

Video screenshot RSI© The New Voice

Switzerland has initiated an investigation into defense contractor RUAG following an unsuccessful attempt to sell Ukraine nearly 100 Leopard-1 tanks, Bloomberg reported on Aug. 21, citing the Swiss Defense Ministry.

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine

Author: Віра Олійник

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