Textron Systems has been contracted to provide new tactical vehicles to Iraq, as the country continues to battle the Islamic State, as well as Colombia, through the U.S. Foreign Military Sales program.
According to a recent report, service officials have contracted Louisiana-based defense firm Textron Systems Marine & Land Systems to build 60 new Commando Select armored personnel carriers for Baghdad.
All of the vehicles will be outfitted with dual turret armed with a 40mm grenade launcher and a 50 caliber heavy machine gun. Of the 60 vehicles headed to Baghdad, four will also be equipped with a command and control systems, according to the notice. Textron will also provide the same number and variants of the armored personnel carrier to the Colombian military.
The contract carries a total value of $65.9 million. Program officials at U.S. Army Contracting Command in Michigan will oversee the program. The vehicles will be assembled at Textron's facility in Slidell, La.
The deal comes at time when Iraqi forces are waging a pitched battle against Islamic State militants near Mosul. IS fighters overran the country's second-largest city in 2014 after Iraqi military and police forces fled in the face of the assault. Local forces abandoned millions of dollars worth of weapons and equipment sold to the Iraqi military by the United States during their hasty retreat.
Iraqi forces, backed by American and coalition warplanes, are currently in the midst of a counterassault to retake the city.