DEFENSIE

V.S. keuren wapenverkoop van $1,8 mrd aan Taiwan goed

BY JORDI BOU

China has threatened to retaliate against the latest U.S. arms sale to Taiwan, a self-ruled island that Beijing claims as its own.

The $1.8bn arms deal comprises three weapons systems that would
make a Chinese amphibious invasion of Taiwan more difficult, according to analysts.

The State Department said it had agreed to sell 135 of the AGM-84H SLAM-ER missiles made by Boeing, for an estimated $1 billion, 11 truck-based rocket launchers made by Lockheed Martin Corp called a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS), for an estimated cost of $436 million, and six MS-110 Recce external sensor pods made by Collins Aerospace for jets, at an estimated cost of $367 million.

Other arms transfers to Taiwan valued at between $5bn and $7bn, and believed to include MQ-9 drones and Harpoon coastal missile defence system, are reportedly in various stages of approval.

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