The Colombian Army is to receive 144 M1117 GUARDIAN armoured vehicles from US surplus stocks. They are a variant of the Armored Security Vehicle (ASV) and represent the largest single project to strengthen the service’s capabilities in recent years.
The vehicles are subject to the US government’s Excess Defense Articles (EDA) provisions – a programme covering the donation or sale of surplus military equipment.
The 144 additional vehicles will reinforce the fleet of 68 GUARDIANs already in the Colombian Army’s inventory. The first 39 vehicles were ordered in 2010 and a further 29 in 2013, this time with some modifications, including turrets featuring 0.5in calibre machine guns and 40mm grenade launchers.
They are expected to serve in those areas of Colombia in which criminal groups such as the ELN, the former FARC groups and narco-paramilitary organisations operate.
Santiago Rivas and Florencia Lucero Heguy in Buenos Aires for MON