The Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified Congress on Tuesday that it plans to sell 290 billion US dollars worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, including 3,000 precision-guided munitions.
Why it matters: The State Department’s approval of a potential deal in the final weeks of the Trump administration talked about despite his election campaign, President-elect Biden vowed to end arms sales to Saudi Arabia.
detail: The Pentagon said in a statement that Saudi Arabia has requested the purchase of GBU-39 SDB I ammunition, parts, U.S. government and contractor engineering, weapons support, support equipment, and other items and services. Boeing will be the main contractor.
- The statement said: “The proposed sale will increase Saudi Arabia̵
- “The scale and accuracy of SDB I can reduce the collateral damage of effective ammunition. The potential sale will further enhance the interoperability between the United States and Saudi Arabia.”
note: The Trump administration’s sale to Saudi Arabia in 2019 has aroused bipartisan anger among lawmakers.
- The State Department’s Inspector General discovered in August last year that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had bypassed Congress’ approval of the US$8 billion arms sales transaction, but failed to “fully assess the risks and implement mitigation measures to reduce civilian casualties caused by the transaction.”
- The Biden transition team declined to comment on the latest news from the Pentagon, saying “it is inappropriate for us to do this during the transition period.”