01:12 GMT +321 October 2019
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    Soldiers stand on a tank of the Saudi-led coalition deployed on the outskirts of the southern Yemeni port city of Aden on August 3, 2015, during a military operation against Shiite Huthi rebels and their allies.

    $1 Billion Worth of Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia Approved by Washington

    © AFP 2019 / Saleh Al-Obeidi
    Middle East
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The US Department of State has approved just over $1 billion in potential arms sales to Saudi Arabia that includes spare parts for armored vehicles, maintenance support for helicopters and anti-tank missiles, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in three press releases.

    "The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Saudi Arabia of TOW 2B (BGM-71F-Series) missiles for an estimated cost of $670 million," the first release said.  [A sale of $300 million] for common spares/repair parts to support Saudi Arabia’s fleet of M1A2 Abrams tanks, M2 Bradley Fighting Vehicles, High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles, Light Armored Vehicles, M198 Towed Howitzers, additional support, and other related elements of logistics and program support," the second release said.

    According to the first release, Saudi Arabia has requested to buy up to 6,600 TOW 2B missiles (BGM-71F-Series) and 96 TOW 2B (BGM-71F-Series) fly-to-buy lot validation missiles.

    A third release added that a possible sale worth $106.8 million was approved for a Maintenance Support Services contract (MSS). The MSS supports the Royal Saudi Land Forces Aviation Command’s fleet of AH-64D/E, UH-60L, Schweizer 333 and Bell 406CS helicopters.

    The sales come as Yemen continues to be engulfed in a violent conflict between the government headed by Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and the Houthi movement, also known as Ansar Allah. Since March 2015, the Saudi-led coalition of mostly Persian Gulf countries has been carrying out airstrikes against the Houthis at Hadi's request.


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    arms sales, TOW, Saudi Arabia, United States
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