Egypt buys 30 Rafale fighter jets from France

Egypt buys 30 Rafale fighter jets from France


The Egyptian military has confirmed that it has ordered 30 Rafale jets from the French defense company Dassault Aviation to support “national security”.

The contract, which follows the purchase of 24 Rafale jets in 2015, will be funded by a 10-year loan, the military said in a statement late Monday.

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The Egyptian military has confirmed that it has ordered 30 Rafale jets from the French defense company Dassault Aviation to support “national security”.

The contract, which follows the purchase of 24 Rafale jets in 2015, will be funded by a 10-year loan, the military said in a statement late Monday.

The investigation agency Disclose had previously reported on Monday that the order was part of a secret mega-defense agreement worth almost four billion euros.

According to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Egypt is the third largest arms importer in the world after Saudi Arabia and India.

Arms purchases have increased 136 percent over the past ten years. The company has diversified its sourcing beyond the US and bought military equipment from France, Germany and Russia, the institute said in a report released earlier this year.

The new Rafale deal “strengthens the strategic and military partnership between France and Egypt,” said French Defense Minister Florence Parly in a statement on Tuesday.

“This treaty shows the strategic nature of the partnership France has with Egypt, while our two countries are determined to fight terrorism and promote stability in their regional environment,” the statement added.

Cairo has positioned itself as a bulwark of stability in the region while the conflict in its western neighbor Libya continues.

President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and French counterpart Emmanuel Macron maintain a close relationship based on mutual security interests.

At a joint press conference with Sisi in Paris in December, Macron said: “I will not base defense and economic cooperation matters on these disagreements (on human rights).”

(With contributions from agencies)

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