The new US government has temporarily froze sales of F35 fighters to the UAE to reassess the deal. Some arms deals the previous administration concluded with Saudi Arabia under Donald Trump have also been suspended.
A State Department spokesman said the freeze was aimed at ensuring that “US arms sales serve our strategic goals.” Washington does not usually sell weapons to Middle Eastern powers that could alter the balance of power at Israel’s expense.
That country had protested in October against the sale of F-35 fighter jets to the UAE, which was approved by the Trump administration in the run-up to the normalization of relations between the UAE and Israel. Prime Minister Netanyahu has said he will not stop the deal after the United States assured that Israel will maintain its military superiority in the region. Israel and the Netherlands have already purchased those aircraft, also known as the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF).
Weapons shipments to the UAE and Saudi Arabia have been widely criticized for deploying weapons of war in the conflict in Yemen.
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