SNAPSHOTS

UAE and Saudi Policy Changes Pave the Way for U.S. Arms Sales

MIN READApr 15, 2021 | 17:52 GMT

An F-35 military aircraft participates in a NATO training exercise.

(VINCENT JANNINK/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)

The U.S. decision to authorize the first stage of the most advanced arms sale yet to the United Arab Emirates indicates Washington may be less willing to pressure its Arab Gulf allies, as both Abu Dhabi and Saudi Arabia pivot to less confrontational foreign and domestic policies. The White House could, however, revert to a more hard-line position again if these governments deviate from U.S. regional goals. On April 13, a U.S. State Department spokesman said the United States would proceed with a controversial $23 billion arms sale to the United Arab Emirates after an initial review of the sale. The spokesman said the sale would likely see delivery in 2025 or later, and that reviews of Emirati human rights and usage of weapons would continue, along with consultations with Emirati officials. The sale, which was approved by the administration of former U.S. President Donald Trump in January 2020, includes...

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