Cyprus: Serb-made Nora-B52 and BOV M16 MILOS vehicles ready for delivery

The first Nora-B52 self-propelled howitzers and BOV M16 MILOS vehicles ordered by the Republic of Cyprus from Serbia are ready for delivery. As had been revealed by DOURIOS IPPOS ALMANAC 2017-2018 last March, in view of the reinforcement in artillery of the Turkish occupation forces, it was decided to purchase modern 155/52 mm self-propelled guns from Serbia.

From photos released, it appears that the configuration chosen by the Cyprus National Guard relates to the older type of tractor (also in service with the Serbian Army) rather than the newer, improved performance offered by the manufacturer.

The Nora-B52 is a wheeled (8 × 8) SP howitzer, capable of a top speed of 90 mph on road and with a combat weight of 34,000 kg. It carries 12 ready-to-use shells with 24 more stored behind the tractor.

The system is characterized by a highly automated system with a rate of fire of 4 rounds / minute and the maximum range with the common M107 projectile of 32,000 meters. Using Extended Range Rounds(ERFB-BB) the range increases to 41.850 meters.

Artillery is a sector in which the Cyprus National Guard is seriously behind, as it has only one high-performance artillery battalion, with 12 155 mm Zuzana M2000Gs of Slovak origin.

But they have a 45 caliber tube, giving a maximum range, using extended range rounds, of 39,600 meters.

Artillery has another battalion with 12 old 155 mm French Mk F3s. This is a 1960s design, which was used second-hand and is seriously underperforming, with a maximum range of 20,000 meters.

The supply of Nora-B52 relates to two battalions with a total of 24 tubes and therefore constitutes only the minimum amount of reinforcement that could be made. Deliveries are expected to begin next September and the new cannons will be publicly displayed at the military parade on October 1, 2019.