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September 27, 2020 9:38 am

UAE Submits Formal Requests to Acquire F-35s From US

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US airmen walk next to a Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II aircraft, as it is moved, on the eve of the 52nd Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport, June 18, 2017. Photo: Reuters / Pascal Rossignol / File. – Despite objections from Israel, the United Arab Emirates has submitted a formal request to acquire F-35 jets from the United States.

The request to the US State Department came a week after the UAE normalized ties with Israel as part of a Sept. 15 signing ceremony in Washington. Bahrain has also normalized relations with Israel.

Under US law, Israel is required to have a Qualitative Military Edge in the Middle East as its steadfast democratic ally there. The Trump administration has sought to assuage Israel’s concerns that the UAE acquiring the F-35 would undermine that edge.

Officials from the US Defense Department and State Department declined to comment, citing protocol over not commenting on potential US arms sales, to Bloomberg, which first reported on Friday the formal UAE request, citing a US official familiar with the matter.

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