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Weapons Industry: US State Department OKs $2B in F-16 Weapons Sales to Iraq - by Awad Mustafa

The US State Department has approved nearly $2 billion in sales of more than 33,000 F-16 Block-52 weapons and munitions to Iraq.

The possible Foreign Military Sale to Iraq for the Major Defense Equipment weapons, munitions, equipment and logistics support is estimated at $1.95 billion and the Pentagon's Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on Jan. 15.

The contract was awarded to Lockheed Martin, Lockheed Martin Simulation, Training and Support, the Raytheon Company, The Marvin Group, United Technologies Aerospace Systems, Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Training, the Royal Jordanian Air Academy in Amman, Jordan, Pratt and Whitney, and Michael Baker International.

According to the DSCA, the implementation of this sale will require about 400 US government and contractor personnel to reside in Iraq until 2020 as part of this sale to establish maintenance support, on-the-job maintenance training and maintenance advice.

Iraq has four Lockheed Martin F-16 Block 52 aircraft and soon expects the delivery of four to five more fighters, according to Wathaq al-Hashimi, director of the Baghdad-based Iraqi Group for Strategic Studies.

Read more: US State Department OKs $2B in F-16 Weapons Sales to Iraq

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