Angry, US hesitates to sell F-35 after UAE buys Chinese L-15

Angry, US hesitates to sell F-35 after UAE buys Chinese L-15
L-15 Hongdu China /Defence Security Asia

International Military - On March 1, 2022, a US official stressed that the United States was committed to selling the F-35 and attack drones to the UAE. It is known that a deal worth 23 billion dollars was carried out by the UAE during the Trump regime, but this idea was rejected by progressive Democrats in Congress.

The deal is part of the normalization of the UAE's relations with Israel. An Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs Jessica Lewis commented on this matter. "The US vowed to continue to help them (UAE) on the threat it faces from the Iran-backed Houthis."

"Controversy with the Houthis in Yemen continues to escalate, and we are committed to partnering with the UAE," Lewis told Alarabiya News.

Everything changed when Joe Biden was in control

The Ministry of Defense of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has agreed to buy 12 units of the L-15 Hongdu Fighter Lead In Trainer/Light Combat Aircraft (FLIT/LCA) made in China. In fact, the UAE intends to increase the number to 36 units in the future, the Jakarta Zone cites Defense Security Asia.

"We are now in the final stages of talks with China. The final contract will be signed by both parties in the near future,” said Tareq Al Hosani, chief executive of the Tawazun Economic Council.

The idea of ​​buying FLIT/LCA aircraft from China is expected to worsen relations between the UAE and the US, after the White House postponed selling the F-35 to the Middle Eastern country. “The Joe Biden government has acted to delay the sale of the fifth-generation F-35 aircraft to the UAE.

After the Gulf state established closer commercial ties with Chinese telecommunications infrastructure provider Huawei through 5G technology," Defense Security Asia source said. After the US postponed the sale of F-35s to the UAE, the Gulf state decided to buy 80 Rafale fighters from France.

At this time, the value of the purchase of the FLIT/LCA aircraft by the UAE is unknown, but the L-15 aircraft are estimated to be worth between 10 and 15 million dollars per unit. The value per unit of the fighter aircraft makes it cheaper than fighter aircraft made by US and other European companies.

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