Azerbaijan Likely Customer for 48 Serbian Nora B52 SP Howitzers

This contract is worth over $300M
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  • 11:41 AM, December 13, 2023
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Azerbaijan Likely Customer for 48 Serbian Nora B52 SP Howitzers
Azerbaijan's President, Ilham Aliyev, in Serbia on December 10, 2023 @Serbia MoD

Azerbaijan could be the mystery customer that has reportedly purchased 48 Nora B52 self-propelled howitzers from Serbia.

Local media reports around November 20 indicated that Serbia is selling these wheeled self-propelled howitzers to an unnamed country for €311 million. This announcement came just before the visit of Azerbaijan's leader to Serbia.

On December 10, Azerbaijan's President, Ilham Aliyev, attended a presentation of weapons at the Serbian capital. The Azeri delegation was shown various defense systems, including PASARS-16 air defense system variants, PASARS with four portable anti-aircraft missile systems, 40mm Bofors L/70 anti-aircraft gun, Mistral 3+, Strela-2М and Malyutka 2ТP anti-aircraft systems, a radar, and an anti-drone jammer. Additionally, the zero series of the PASARS–16 system was showcased at the Niš military airfield.

The weapons display featured RLN-RF and RLN-TK surface-to-air missiles, new air-to-surface missiles like ALAS missiles, and the GAVRAN (Raven) loitering munition. Unmanned aerial vehicles, such as PEGAZ and SENKA, along with their ground control stations, the RVML-02 system, VRABAC, OSICA killer drone, OBAD armed drone, and the armed mini-QUADCOPTER were also highlighted.

Azerbaijan Likely Customer for 48 Serbian Nora B52 SP Howitzers
Serbian self-propelled guns NORA B52 on an armored chassis

President Aleksandr Vucic confirmed the presence of the contract but did not disclose the buyer's identity, only mentioning that the country is "not in Africa." According to Vucic, the formal procedures for approving the Nora B52 ACS order are yet to be completed by the president and parliament of the purchasing country.

Various sources in Serbia and the Caucasus suggest that Azerbaijan is the buyer of the Nora B52 self-propelled guns in this large batch, although there is no official confirmation at this time.

The Nora B52 is a Serbian wheeled self-propelled howitzer developed by Yugoimport SDPR in 2006. Based on the D-20 artillery system, it features a 155-mm self-propelled gun with an increased barrel length to 52 calibers. The gun is mounted on a rotating platform with an 8x8 wheel formula. In firing position, the gun turns back and is stabilized by four telescopic electro-hydraulic outriggers.

The ammunition set on the Nora B52 includes 36 rounds, with 12 ready for firing in the automatic loader and 24 in the ammunition magazine behind the cabin. The firing range is up to 41 km.

Apart from Serbia, these wheeled self-propelled howitzers are in service with Bangladesh, Cyprus, Myanmar, and Kenya.

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