The Defense Ministry of Kosovo announced that the U.S. delivered at least five M1117 armored security vehicles last week as part of an American donation to the Kosovo Army. The Southeastern European country does not disclose information on the number and timing of the delivery of armored vehicles, but Kosovo's defense minister stated that the vehicles were donated and that they were not the last delivery. According to Albanian news agency Telegrafi, the Kosovo Army intends to purchase weapons from the U.S. as part of the American program for military sales abroad, and $5.3 million has been allocated for the implementation of three new projects.
The M1117 Guardian is an internal security vehicle developed in the late 1990s for service with the U.S. Military Police. The first prototypes appeared in February 1997 and serial production commenced between 1999 and early 2000. The M1117 was one of the first American military vehicles to be built with a specialized mine-resistant hull, and after 2001 was adopted in increasing numbers as a direct response to the threat posed by improvised explosive devices to U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. Its is armed with an Mk 19 grenade launcher, a M2HB Browning machine gun and an M240H medium machine gun.