The first German Panzerhaubitze 2000 (PzH 2000) 155 mm armored howitzer returned from Afghanistan on 28 March, the Bundeswehr announced today. The artillery piece was loaded into an Antonov An-124-100M in Mazar-e-Sharif and flown to Leipzig.
Loading in Mazar-e-Sharif (photo: Bundeswehr/PAO RC North)
The PzH 2000 was moved from the Partnering and Advisory Task Force (formerly Provincial Reconstruction Team) in Kunduz to Mazar-e-Sharif in the beginning of March. Since mid-February, Mazar-e-Sharif has been a hub for the withdrawal of German equipment from Afghanistan. Before it is sent back home, equipment is checked, disinfected and registered for air transport, either directly to Leipzig or to Trabzon, northwestern Turkey, on the Black Sea coast, to be sealifted back to Germany.
Three more PzH 2000s are still in Mazar-e-Sharif waiting to be airlifted back home. Germany deployed a total of six PzH 2000s to Afghanistan starting in 2010.