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U.S. advises Congress of possible military sales to UAE, Saudi, Qatar
December 8, 2016 / 11:11 PM / a year ago

U.S. advises Congress of possible military sales to UAE, Saudi, Qatar

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. State Department notified Congress on Thursday of possible military sales to Saudi Arabia worth $3.51 billion, to the United Arab Emirates worth $3.5 billion and to Qatar for $781 million, the Pentagon said in a statement.

The possible sale to the UAE involves Apache AH-64E helicopters and services; the Saudi Arabia sale is for CH-47F Chinook cargo helicopters and related equipment; and the possible sale to Qatar is for logistics support and spare engines and equipment for C-17 aircraft, the statement said.

The approval coincides with Saudi Arabia leading a military coalition in support of Yemeni forces loyal to the exiled government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi who are trying to oust Iran-allied Houthi forces from the capital, Sanaa.

In October, the United States said it would start an “immediate review” of its assistance to the Saudi-led campaign, which has drawn condemnation from human rights advocates for killing civilians.

Human Rights Watch said in a statement on Thursday that the Saudi-led coalition had killed several dozen civilians in three air strikes in September and October.

“The coalition’s use of United States-supplied weapons in two of the strikes, including a bomb delivered to Saudi Arabia well into the conflict, puts the U.S. at risk of complicity in unlawful attacks,” the statement said.

Previously this year, the United States approved the sale to Saudi Arabia of about $1.15 billion in military equipment.

Reporting by Eric Beech and Yeganeh Torbati; Editing by David Alexander and Leslie Adler

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