#Expert: #Timing of #Qatar #F15 #deal #more #procedural #than #political

Moroccan Sahara 2016

WASHINGTON: The sale of 36 US F-15 jets to Qatar is β€œmore of a procedural” move than a β€œpolitical” one, a US defense analyst told Arab News, adding that defense and security ties between Doha and Washington remain integral to American interests.
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and his Qatari counterpart Khalid Al-Attiyah finalized the $12 billion agreement at the Pentagon on Wednesday, following almost a year of negotiations and deliberations that involved the US Congress.
The Pentagon said in a statement that the deal β€œwill give Qatar a state-of-the-art capability and increase security cooperation and interoperability between the United States and Qatar.”
Defense analyst Nicholas A. Heras of the Center for a New American Security said the agreement falls under the category of β€œlong-running deals that need to be cleared after review by different elements of the US government.”
But coming on the heels of the unprecedented spat between Doha…

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