Top shooters test new sniper weapons at Sirgala training ground
The Estonian Centre for Defense Investment (ECDI) has announced a tender for the procurement of sniper weapons for the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) and the Defense League (Kaitseliit). Test firings were carried out at the Sirgala training ground in Ida-Viru County on Tuesday to assess the technical suitability of different weapons for the tender.
Several multinational companies and their top shooters took part in the testing of new 8.6 mm caliber sniper rifles at the Sirgala training ground in Ida-Viru County on Tuesday.
According to an ECDI press release, the purpose of the testing session was to assess the accuracy and reliability of the weapons.
"The sniper rifle kit being tested must have high accuracy. Currently, it is our task, along with the Defense Forces, to make sure that the weapon systems being tested meet the tender requirements when it comes to both accuracy and reliability," said Ramil Lipp, armament category manager of the ECDI.
"It is good to see that the internationally renowned companies here today are interested in our tender," Lipp added.
The weapons being tested at Sirgala are those produced by arms manufacturers Sako, Haenel, Unique Alpine, and Desert Tech and include accessories selected by the tenderers and fitted on the weapons as a kit.
Major Risto Pärtel, chief weapons officer of the Estonian Defense Forces (EDF), said that the task of snipers is to eliminate high-value targets while remaining undetected.
"Using the new rifles, that can be done at any time of the day, as the weapons are equipped with state-of-the-art equipment including silencers and thermal weapon sights," Pärtel said.
" In addition to high accuracy, the weapons also have to be robust and as compact and light as possible. The new weapons will replace the Sako TRG-42 sniper rifles, which are currently in service," he added.
The weapons must also be capable of shooting accurately over long distances of up to 1,500 meters.
According to the ECDI's press release, the evaluation criteria for the tender include the cost of the weapon and its associated accessories, its weight and length, as well as maintenance costs.
Once the test firings have been concluded and the results evaluated, a contract will be awarded to the successful company in the second quarter of this year.
The winner of the tender will be announced this spring, while the expected delivery date for the new sniper weapons is in 2024.
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Editor: Michael Cole