TEL AVIV – The State Department approved a proposal to sell Israel military equipment to the tune of $440 million, according to a Defense Security Cooperation Agency press release published on Friday.
The “Possible Foreign Military Sale” would include 13 76-mm naval guns, as well as a variety of naval maintenance materials and tools, technical, logistics and support services, operations and maintenance training and other related supplies and services requested by the Israeli government, the agency said.
“The United States is committed to the security of Israel,” said the press release. “And it is vital to U.S. national interests to assist Israel to develop and maintain a strong and ready self-defense capability. … This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a strategic regional partner that has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East.”
The agency said the equipment “will improve Israel’s capability to meet current and future threats in the defense of its borders and territorial waters. The naval guns will be installed on Israeli Navy Sa’ar-4.5 and Sa’ar-6 missile patrol boats. One gun will be located at an Israeli naval training center to be used for training maintenance personnel.”
In September, Israel and the U.S. signed a landmark defense contract worth $38 billion over 10 years.
In accordance with the deal, Israel will receive $3.1 billion in foreign military financing this year, followed by $3.3 billion in subsequent years, plus $500 million designated to missile defense.