Our Reliable French Ally Update. From AFP, with thanks to Kasper:
PARIS (AFP) – France and Saudi Arabia signed two military accords opening the way for the sale of weapons systems like tanks and fighter jets worth billions of dollars, the French presidency said.
The deal came at the end of a three-day visit to Paris by Saudi Crown Prince Sultan bin Abdulaziz during which he held talks with French President Jacques Chirac….
“These accords signed at the highest level of the two states fix the framework of our cooperation in military matters, and as such it’s a political engagement to solidify our defence partnership in these projects,” French presidency spokesman Jerome Bonnafont said.
He said details of the sales would be worked out in future bilateral discussions, “notably concerning the Rafale fighter plane, surface ships, submarines and Leclerc tanks.”…
Against whom will the Saudis use this materiel? Hmmmm…three guesses:
While Prince Sultan was in Paris, the Pentagon said it had informed Congress of the possible sale of US arms to Saudi Arabia worth six billion dollars.
The contract centres on light armoured vehicles and Black Hawk combat helicopters.
Chirac and Prince Sultan also discussed at length the conflict in Lebanon, on which the two sides said their positions were close.
“We cannot allow Israel to continue its actions,” the prince said, reaffirming his country’s support for a multinational force along the Israeli-Lebanese border.