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July 11, 2016 10:31 am

US Approves Sale of 8 Seahawk Helicopters, Related Defense Equipment to Israel

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SH-60B Seahawk2 helicopter. Photo: Wikipedia.

SH-60B Seahawk2 helicopter. Photo: Wikipedia. – The United States has approved the sale of eight SH-60F Seahawk helicopters and related defense equipment to Israel.

The Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency announced last week that after approving the sale of eight helicopter airframes, “the State Department has made a determination approving a possible foreign military sale to Israel for excess SH-60F Seahawk helicopter equipment and support.” In a letter to the U.S. Senate dated July 6, the agency said the estimated cost for the related equipment was $300 million.

“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, which has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East,” the letter said.

The SH-60F Seahawk, manufactured by Sikorsky Aircraft, is used for anti-submarine warfare, search-and-rescue missions, and other functions.

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In its letter to the Senate, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency said the new helicopters would be used to defend Israel’s natural gas infrastructure.

“Israel has purchased four new frigates to secure the Leviathan Natural Gas Field,” the letter said. “The SH-60F helicopters will be used onboard these new frigates to patrol and protect these gas fields as well as other areas under threat.”

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