3 senators to oppose sale of F-35 jets to UAE
Web Desk -- Voicing their concerns over the deal, three US senators have moved to block the sale of top-of-the-line F-35 jets to United Arab Emirates (UAE). The deal is commonly seen as a reward for the nation’s recognition of Israel.
For the lawmakers, even if they persuade majority in Congress to oppose the $23 billion package, it would an uphill task to override a veto by outgoing President Donald Trump.
Senator Chris Murphy, a Democrat close to President-elect Joe Biden, said that the UAE violated terms of previous sales, pointing to reports that weapons sent to the US ally have been discovered in war-ravaged Libya and Yemen.
“I support the normalization of relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, but nothing in that agreement requires us to flood the region with more weapons and facilitate a dangerous arms race,” Murphy said in a statement.
He sponsored the resolution with Robert Menendez, the top Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Rand Paul, a Republican who is generally supportive of Trump but is critical of US military interventions.
Congress last year tried to block a major arms package for Saudi Arabia and the UAE but failed to muster the two-thirds majority to override Trump’s vetoes.