The Lebanese military announced on May 11 that it had received ten VCAC “Mephisto” anti-tank guided missiles (ATGM) carriers and training equipment from France.
The VCAC “Mephisto” tank-hunter is based on the VAB armoured vanguard vehicle [“véhicule de l’Avant Blindé” in French]. The vehicle is equipped with the Euromissile Mephisto system, which fires HOT ATGMs.
The most advanced variant of the ATGM, known as HOT-3, has a range of 4,3km and can penetrate 1,250 mm of rolled homogeneous armour (RHA). Each VCAC “Mephisto” is armed with four ready-to-fire HOT ATGMs and eight more in reserve.
The French embassy in the Lebanese capital, Beirut, said on Twitter that the delivery of these ATGM carriers is a part of an “intensive cooperation plan” between the French and Lebanese armies.
L’assistance militaire ?? au ?? se poursuit: livraison de 10 nouveaux VAB HOT avec leurs simulateurs d’entrainement et d’autres équipements d’instruction, au port de #Beyrouth ce matin. La France encore et toujours aux cotés de l’Armée libanaise!@LebarmyOfficial pic.twitter.com/255wKVAHDC
— La France au Liban (@AmbaFranceLiban) May 11, 2019
In the last few months, the Lebanese military received loads of military equipment from the U.S. including unnamed aerial vehicles (UAVs). This Western support for the army is viewed as an attempt to challenge the legitimacy of Hezbollah, which has been defending Lebanon since the mid-80s.