21:58 GMT24 May 2020
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    Israeli government has approved a procurement of 17 additional US-manufactured fifth-generation F-35 fighter jets in order to bring the total number of such aircraft in Israeli Air Force (IAF) service to 50, the governmental press service said Saturday.

    TEL AVIV (Sputnik) — Israel expects to receive the first two F-35 fighter jets in December, which will become the first aircraft of such type in the Middle East.

    "The Ministerial Committee on National Security Affairs headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has unanimously decided to acquire 17 F-35 fighter jets. Thus, the total number of such machines, which will be delivered to the Israeli Air Force, will amount to 50," the press service said.

    In June, IAF Chief of Staff Brig. Gen. Tal Kalman said that the IAF planned to purchase 75 F-35 fighter jets.

    The F-35 project is the most ambitious and expensive weapon system in the history of the US Defense Department, with a cost of some $1.5 trillion.

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    F-35, Israeli Air Force, United States, Israel
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