(TPS) Israel will move forward with purchasing a new squadron of US-made F-35 stealth fighter jets in a $3 billion deal, Israel’s Defense Ministry announced on Sunday.
The purchase of 25 additional F-35s from the Maryland-based Lockheed Martin would bring Israel’s fleet of stealth jets to 75.
Defense Minister Yoav Gallant approved the purchase on the recommendation of Israeli Defense Forces Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Herzi Halevi.
Israeli officials will issue an official procurement request to the American F-35 Directorate, with the transaction to be formally signed off in the coming months.
Other US companies involved in the production include the Connecticut-based Pratt and Whitney for the plane’s engines.
The Defense Ministry said the planes were being financed through US military assistance.
Israel and the US signed a 10-year $38 billion Memorandum of Understanding providing a framework for US military assistance in 2016. The assistance primarily comes through the US Foreign Military Financing (FMF) program and the US Department of Defense’s share in the financing of joint projects, such as missile defense systems.
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