Albanian Land Force

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Albanian Land Force
Forca Tokësore
Albanian Land forces.svg
Coat of Arms of the Albanian Land Forces
Active 1912–present
Country Albania
Allegiance Republic of Albania
Type Army
Role National Defense
Size 14,395 (2009)[1]
Part of Albanian Armed Forces
Insignia
Identification symbol Albanian Land Forces insignia.svg
Royal Marine posing with an Albanian Commando (right), both showing their shoulder patches.

The Albanian Land Force (ALF) (Albanian: Forca Tokësore (FTSH)) is the most important branch of the Albanian Armed Forces. They are composed of: the The Land Force structure includes the Command and the Staff of LF, as well as units and subunits which make possible the fulfillment of its mission. Command and Staff Staff Support Company Training Centre “Zall-Herr” Garrison 1st Infantry Battalion 2nd Infantry Battalion 3rd Infantry Battalion Commando Battalion Special Operations Battalion (Albania) Combat Support Battalion .[2]

Mission[edit]

Its main mission is the defence of independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Albania, participation in humanitarian, combat, non-combat and peace support operations.

Specific tasks[edit]

  • Maintaining and development of capacities to provide a high level of readiness.
  • Continuous and good training to deal with the tasks that might be assigned to it.
  • Assists the community in cases of humanitarian emergencies; supports Search and Rescue Operations(SAR).
  • Cooperates with other national institutions in preventing illegal trafficking, smuggling of people and conventional weapons in Albania.
  • Trains and participates with troops in peace support missions in the framework of NATO, EU and UN.

History[edit]

Land Force is a priority unit in the structure of the Armed Forces. Land Force was established on August 29, 2000, including military units with traditions and rich multi-year activity, spread across the territory of the Republic of Albania. In year 2000, the Land Force included five infantry divisions with 55 brigades and 300 battalions deployed in 167 different regions of the country. During its continuous reform, the Land Force underwent new changes. In year 2006, the Land Force was suppressed and the Joint Force Command was established. In the context of the ongoing transformation of the Armed Forces, based on the concept of an army small in number, operational and professional, on the 9th of December 2009 was reestablished the Land Force on the basis of Rapid Reaction Brigade and Commando Regiment.

Based on the constitutional mission, the Land Force was involved in a process of profound transformation according to Western military concepts, and with the transition of the entire force from a conscript military service into a professional army its level of operability has increased. The structures of Land Force have been engaged in Peace Support Operations in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iraq, Chad and currently in Heart and Kandahar, Afghanistan. Land Force has the major share in peacekeeping operations in the framework of NATO, UN and EU. The Land Force is managed by young qualified leaders educated in military schools of NATO countries, as in the USA, Italy, Turkey, Germany, England, Austria, etc, based on the cooperation projects with these countries.

Land Force is engaged in civil emergency operations to help the community in cases of natural disasters, such as floods, blocked roads and aid distribution in cases of heavy snowfalls, fire suppression operations, etc.

Since its establishment, the Land Force is led by experienced commanders.

From year 2000 to 2006, Land Force was headed by Major General Kostaq Karoli; from 2006-2008, it was led by Brigadier General Shpëtim Spahiu; from year 2008 to August 2012 by Brigadier General Viktor Berdo. From August 2012 and onwards, the Land Force is commanded by Major General Zyber Dushku.

Equipment[edit]

Firearms[edit]

  • Pistol and Submachine guns
Model Image Caliber Origin Note
Beretta Px4 Storm PX4Storm.jpg 9x19mm  Italy In use with the Special Operations Battalion (Albania)
P8 Pistol HKUSP.png 9x19 mm  Germany Limited use in the B.O.S.[3]
P12 Pistol HKUSP.png .45 ACP  Germany Limited use in the B.O.S.[3]
Beretta 92 Beretta 92 FS.gif 9x19 mm  Italy In use with the B.O.S.[4]
HK MP7 MP7A1 REMOV.jpg HK 4.6×30 mm  Germany Limited use in the B.O.S. Mostly used by the RENEA, the Albanian police [3]
HK UMP HKUMP45.JPG .45 ACP  Germany Limited use in the B.O.S.
  • Assault Rifles, Battle Rifles and Carbines
Model Image Caliber Origin Note
M4 carbine PEO M4 Carbine RAS M68 CCO.jpg 5.56×45mm  United States Service Rifle 3 April 2015
M203 grenade launcher M203 1.jpg 40x46mm SR  United States 3 April 2015
ASH-82 AKM automatkarbin, Ryssland - 7,62x39mm - Armémuseum.jpg 7.62×39 mm  Soviet Union 3.000.000 Service Rifle, to be retired
ASH-78 Tip-1 AK-47 and Type 56 DD-ST-85-01269.jpg 7.62×39 mm  China Service Rifle, to be retired
HK G36 Domok g36.JPG 5.56×45 mm  Germany 350
HK 416 HK416.jpg 5.56×45 mm  Germany 200
HK G3 DCB Shooting G3 pictures.jpg 7.62×51 mm  Germany Used during peacekeeping operations
Beretta ARX-160 Beretta ARX-160, Interpolitex 2012.jpg 5.56×45 mm  Italy Used by the B.O.S. And Military Police 4000 [5]
  • Sniper Rifles
Model Image Caliber Origin !Note
SVD Dragunov SVD Dragunov.jpg 7.62×54mmR  Soviet Union Special Operations Battalion (Albania)
PSL Psl sniper rifle.jpeg 7.62×54mmR  Romania Special Operations Battalion (Albania)
Sako TRG Sako TRG-42.jpg .308 Winchester  Finland [6]
Barrett M99 Barrett M99.jpg .50 BMG  United States Special Operations Battalion (Albania)
Steyr HS .50 Steyr HS .50-frontal-scope.jpg .50 BMG  Austria Special Operations Battalion (Albania)

Mortar[edit]

Model Image Caliber Origin Note
82mm Zagan 82 mm moździerz wz 37.jpg 82mm  China 259
M-120 Mortaja 120 mm.jpg 120mm  Israel 550
M-43 160mm Mortar M1943 003.jpg 160mm  Russia 100

Armoured Vehicles[edit]

Model Image Caliber Origin Note
Land Rover Wolf Albania Land Force Land Rover Wolf.jpg Armoured Vehicle  United Kingdom 80
Mercedes-Benz G Class Albania Army Mercedes-Benz G-Class.jpg Armoured Vehicle  Germany 150
Iveco VM 90 Albania Land Force Iveco VM 90.jpg Armoured Vehicle  Italy 250
Iveco LMV Albania Land Force IVECO LMV.jpg Armoured Vehicle  Italy 15
HUMVEE Greek-hummer.jpg Armoured Vehicle  United States 30
MRAP Albania Army International MaxxPro.jpg Armoured Vehicle  United States 50
Nexter Aravis Albanian Army Nexter Aravis Ceremony 2012.jpg Armoured Vehicle  France 5+
Nexter Titus 6x6 Albania army NEXTER TITUS 2.jpg Armoured Vehicle  France 1+
M113 Albania Army M-113s.jpg Armoured Vehicle  United States 130
YW-531 Type 63 (YW531).jpg Armoured Vehicle  China 86

Heavy armoured and tanks[edit]

Model Image Caliber Origin Note
Type-59 Tank T-59.JPG Main battle tank  China 721+ delivered by China and used by Albanian government alongside 75 Soviet T-54 & 300+ T-55 tanks. Today most are retired and some in storage.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ IISS 2010, pp. 119–120
  2. ^ "Forcat e Armatosura të Shqipërisë". aaf.mil.al. 2015. 
  3. ^ a b c "hk in albania". Youtube.com. 2007-12-26. Retrieved August 11, 2013. 
  4. ^ Janq Designs. "Special Operations.Com". Special Operations.Com. Retrieved 2012-03-04. 
  5. ^ Tom Kington (September 10, 2009). "Mexico joins Albania and Italy as customer for new Beretta rifle,". DefenceNews. Retrieved August 11, 2013. 
  6. ^ Eric R. Poole (April 2010). "Sako TRG-42 The quest for cold-bore accuracy stops here.". Gunsandammo.com. Retrieved August 11, 2013. 

External links[edit]