Qatar signs pact with U.S. to buy F-15 jets

Qatari employee of Al Jazeera Arabic language TV news channel walks past the logo of Al Jazeera in Doha Qatar. Hackers allegedly broke into the website of Qatar's state-run news agency and published a fake

However, it will be a "cause of concern" for Washington's other allies in the region, most notably Saudi Arabia, which led the push to cut diplomatic ties with Qatar.

The US has been seeking to reassure one of its allies in the region since President Donald Trump tweets appeared to back theSaudi-led boycott on Qatar on charges that it sponsors terrorism and aligns itself with Iran, claims rebutted by Doha.

Congress past year approved the sale of as many as 72 F-15s in an agreement valued at as much as US$21 billion, providing authorisation for the deal that was completed on Wednesday. According to Bloomberg News, Qatar has signed to buy 36 F-15 jets.

The U.S. military announced a similar $21.1 billion deal in November, in the waning days of the Obama administration, for 72 F-15QA fighter jets for Qatar, the Associated Press reported.

In a memorandum then, the state Department said the sale would "enhance the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a friendly country and strengthening our strategically important relationship".

After signing the deal Wednesday, Qatar emphasized the country's alliance.

Reconciliation efforts have expanded to resolve the crisis between Qatar and Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, after the intervention of Russian Federation and Morocco; this, in addition to the efforts exerted by Kuwait and the United States since the beginning of the crisis.

Qatars defense ministry celebrated the deal in a statement issued Wednesday.

The Pentagon told Reuters in a statement that the agreement to purchase the F15 jets would pave the way for further cooperation between the two states in terms of security and military operations. Qatar hosts the regional headquarters for U.S. Central Command, which includes a state-of-the-art air base the U.S. depends on to target "Islamic State".

Turkey is also eager to maintain workable relations with Iran, Saudi Arabia's foe with whom Doha's critics say Qatar maintained excessively close ties.

He was quoted by Kuwait's al-Qabas newspaper and Qatar-based Al Jazeera as saying that Turkey had a neutral stance toward Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

Riyadh also closed its border with Qatar, the only land border the emirate has.

The announcement comes amid conflicting reactions from the Trump administration in the wake of the rift between Qatar and several Gulf nations.

The Turkish leader has urged Saudi Arabia to reduce tensions and lift sanctions.



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