Beretta GLX-160 UBGLs in Service with Egyptian SOF

    A recent image posted on Egypt Defense Review has shown perhaps one of the more detailed images publicly available of Beretta GLX160 40x46mm Low-Velocity UBGL/Stand Alone configuration grenade launchers in use by Egyptian special operations forces (also in use are CZ 807s). The caption states that these operators are from the “103th Battalion” after a night raid. Due to the rising level of violence in the Sinai Peninsula, it is possible that their location is in Sinai as well. Of particular note here is that this appears to be the second order of GLX 160s from Beretta, being that the first went to Egyptian Naval special operations personnel.

     

    Although this may seem new to many followers of the region, what appears to be the first instance of GLX 160 launchers among Egyptian special operations could possibly be in 2013 when this image came out of a soldier posing with an ARX160 and mounted GLX160 underneath. In addition to this photo, we also have Kazakh special operations on parade with Coyote Tan finish 7.62x36mm ARX160s and matching GLX160 UBGLs.

    The soldier is technically a “sailor” as this is the Egyptian Naval special operations command. From a televised video of a visit to a training center of the command, we have this image of a black GLX160 both in standalone form and in a UBGL mounted version. Also note the short Benelli M4 in the middle, another Beretta company/product.

    What differentiates this first order is the color of the ARX160s and the GLX160s. The 7.62x39mm rifles are tan while the grenade launchers are black. Interestingly this dark OD finish isn’t listed on Beretta’s product description of the rifles. In the Army issue/order, the grenade launchers have a matching OD finish with the OD finish of the ARX160 rifles. However, they still have black telescoping Benelli-inspired stocks.

    Notice additional images of the rifles and grenade launchers in these series of photographs posted to Twitter in February of this year indicating that the 2013 purchase order is still in active use.

    Note the indigenously produced Maadi Kalashnikov patterned rifle in front and Beretta ARX160 with GLX160 in standalone configuration slung on the right. Both rifles have interchangeable magazines and ammunition despite several decades of a design and development gap. This is possibly what the Egyptian procurement command had in mind when working on the contract.

    Specifications (Beretta Defense Technologies)

    Caliber: 40 x 46 mm
    Barrel Length: 9.5 in. (243 mm)
    Finish: Black, Coyote Brown
    Locking System: Rotating Bolt
    Sights: Front sight adjustable for elevation and windage. Multi-position rear sight (from 50 to 400 meters in 50-meter steps)
    Trigger System: Double Action
    Stock: Telescoping Stock 5-positions

    Special Thanks to Egypt Defense Review, check out his Twitter Handle and website for all things Egyptian defense.

    Miles

    Infantry Marine, based in the Midwest. Specifically interested in small arms history, development, and usage within the MENA region and Central Asia. To that end, I run Silah Report, a website dedicated to analyzing small arms history and news out of MENA and Central Asia.

    Please feel free to get in touch with me about something I can add to a post, an error I’ve made, or if you just want to talk guns. I can be reached at [email protected]


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