The United States has approved a new sale of air-defense missiles to the United Arab Emirates.
On May 11, 2017 the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announced that the U.S. State Department had approved a sale of Patriot PAC-3 and GEM-T missiles to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The statement noted the sale, if concluded, carried an estimated value of $2 billion.
The DSCA noted in its release,
The Government of the United Arab Emirates has requested the possible sale of sixty (60) Patriot Advanced Capability 3 (PAC-3) missiles with canisters and one hundred (100) Patriot Guidance Enhanced Missile-Tactical (GEM-T) missiles. Also included are canisters, tools and test equipment, support equipment, publications and technical documentation, spare and repair parts, U.S. Government and contractor technical, engineering and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistics and program support.
The U.S. Congress was notified of the potential sale on May 10. The notification of the sale’s approval does not mean the sale has been concluded.
The DSCA stated the sale, if approved, would contribute towards “improving the security of an important ally which has been, and continues to be, a force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East.”
The United States and the UAE are key partners in the Middle East. Earlier this year, American and Emirati special forces conducted a joint raid on suspected al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula fighters, with an intent on acquiring intelligence.
If the missile sale is concluded, it will increase the UAE’s ability to provide missile defense for its forces, which have come under attack by ballistic missiles fired by Ansar Allah, a Yemeni militant group that has targeted Emirati forces in Yemen with ballistic missiles.
Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor for the PAC-3 missiles; Raytheon is the primary contractor for the GEM-T missiles.
The DSCA added, “There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale.”