tirsdag 14. desember 2021

UAE suspends multi-billion dollar weapons deal in sign of growing frustration with US-China showdown

The United Arab Emirates has suspended a multi-billion dollar deal to buy US-made F-35 fighter jets, in a sign of Abu Dhabi's growing frustration with Washington's attempts to limit Chinese technology sales to the oil-rich Gulf state. "The UAE has informed the US that it will suspend discussions to acquire the F-35," an Emirati official told CNN. "Technical requirements, sovereign operational restrictions, and cost/benefit analysis led to the re-assessment."

"The UAE and US were working toward an understanding that would address mutual defense security conditions for the acquisition," the official added. "The US remains the UAE's preferred provider for advanced defense requirements and discussions for the F-35 may be re-opened in the future."

The US State Department said the White House remained "committed" to the deal, which was seen as a cornerstone of an August 2020 agreement to normalize diplomatic relations between the UAE and Israel. The sale -- which would involve the most advanced US weaponry ever transferred to an Arab state -- has been on a collision course since then, with US politicians raising concerns about the deal.