Russian Federation arming Saudi Arabia

Russian Federation arming Saudi Arabia

Russian Federation arming Saudi Arabia

Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia have signed an agreement on the purchase of Russia's S-400 missile system, a defense cooperation official said Monday.

Earlier, the Bloomberg news agency published information with reference to a press release from the Saudi Arabian Military Industries (SAMI), according to which Moscow and Riyadh signed contracts providing for the purchase of S-400 air defense missile systems.

The approval opens the way for Saudi Arabia to purchase 44 Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) launchers and 360 missiles, as well as fire control stations and radars.

The main US contractors who will profit from the sale are aerospace giant Lockheed Martin's space systems division and defense contractor Raytheon.

A day later, the Pentagon said the U.S. State Department had approved the possible sale of a THAAD anti-missile defense system to Saudi Arabia at an estimated cost of $15 billion.

"We will not let anyone spread the ideology of hatred, to finance that kind of ideology or terrorism", he said.

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"THAAD's exo-atmospheric, hit-to-kill capability will add an upper-tier to Saudi Arabia's layered missile defense architecture".

Iran, whose hostile behaviour has got the United States and Saudi Arabia concerned recently, also happens to have one of the biggest ballistic missile programs in the Middle East.

Both Washington and Saudi Arabia accuse Tehran of aggressive and disruptive behavior in the region.

The US deal is believed to be part of a $110 billion arms package promised by President Trump to the Saudi kingdom during a visit in May.

The US has already deployed THAAD to South Korea in defence of North Korea's short-range missiles, which has angered China for interfering.

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