A recent article shows that at least one Canadian made PGW Defense .50 BMG LRT-3 SWS with suppressor is in use with Houthi rebels in Yeman, currently engaged in both a civil war, and a fight with Saudi Arabian armed forces on the border. In addition to the LRT-3, the rebels seem to have gained posession of some other advanced small arms, such as the G36Ks and G36Cs made for export (the internal German version has an additional part on top of the sight that is absent in the export models), in addition to the full length G36 rifles without the optical sight. In one of the pictures coming out of Yemen, they also have a night vision intensifier that mounts to the front of the Schmidt & Bender optic already on the rifle. This probably means that they were able to get their hands on a full issue of the rifle, accessories and all. There is another precision rifle to the right of the LRT-3, which appears to be their .308 “Coyote” variant, with a much more traditional stock, and folding buttstock. You can tell by the fluted barrel, and front mounted picatinny rails for lasers and night image intensifiers. How these rifles came to be used among the rebels is still up to speculation, but seeing that they have all their full issue with them, they were probably sold off by a corrupt official in an illegal arms deal from Saudi Arabia (which uses them), instead of being captured with minimal equipment. We have another picture of an LRT-3 being used in Syria by the Peshmerga, but this was probably directly supplied by the Canadians as a part of the coalition.
Former Infantry Marine, and currently studying at Indiana University. I’ve written for Small Arms Review and Small Arms Defense Journal, and have had a teenie tiny photo that appeared in GQ. Specifically, I’m very interested in small arms history, development, and Military/LE usage within the Middle East, and Central Asia.
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