Algeria’s acquisition of Buk-M2E surface-to-air missile (SAM) systems has effectively been confirmed by the August issue of the People’s National Army’s (ANP) El-Djeichmagazine.
The publication included an article covering the ‘Majd 2017’ exercise held in July, which was supported by a collage of Algerian military equipment – including a transporter erector launcher and radar (TELAR) vehicle from a Buk-M2 system, seen launching a 9M317-series missile.
The story did not mention the SAM system, which was mounted on a Belarusian-made MZKT 6922 6×6 wheeled vehicle instead of the tracked carriers used by most other Buk operators, including Egypt and Syria.
No Buks featured in earlier coverage of the ‘Majd 2017’ exercise, which was carried out by the 3rd Military Region that is responsible for defending much of Algeria’s border with Morocco.
Russian business newspaper Kommersant reported – without citing a source – in April 2016 that deliveries of Buk-M2E systems and Mi-28NE attack helicopters to Algeria would begin that year, under a contract signed in 2013. Algeria displayed its Mi-28NEs for the first time in August 2016.
NPP Start, a Russian company that manufactures specialised vehicles for air defence systems, announced in November 2015 that it had begun to ship Buk components to an unidentified foreign customer under a contract signed in 2013.