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US announces $6.7 bln arms sale to Saudi Arabia

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WASHINGTON (PTI): Saudi Arabia plans to buy 20 military transport planes and five refuelling aircraft along with related defence equipment, worth an estimated $ 6.7 billion, from the US, the Pentagon has said.

The Defence Security Cooperation Agency on Friday notified the Congress details of such a sale deal to Saudi Arabia.

"Saudi Arabia has requested a possible sale of 20 C-130J-30 Aircraft, 5 KC-130J Air Refuelling Aircraft, 120 Rolls Royce AE2100D3 Engines (100 installed and 20 spares), 25 Link-16 Multi-functional Information Distribution Systems, support equipment, spare and repair parts, personnel training and training equipment, publications and technical data, US Government and contractor technical assistance, and other related logistics support," it said.

"The total estimated cost is USD 6.7 billion," the Pentagon said, adding that this proposed sale of C-130J-30 and KC-130J assets will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the US by helping to improve the security of a friendly country that has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East.

The Pentagon argued that Saudi Arabia needs these aircraft to sustain its ageing fleet, which faces increasing obsolescence.

The proposed sale of C-130J and KC-130J aircraft will provide a modern configuration, improve reliability and enhance the Royal Saudi Air Force's ability to effectively field, support, and employ these aircraft, it said.

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