US approves ’emergency’ sale to Israel of 14,000 tank shells


US approves ’emergency’ sale to Israel of 14,000 tank shells

The American government approved “as an emergency”, without going through Congress, the sale to Israel of nearly 14,000 tank shells used in its war against Hamas in Gaza, he said this Saturday.

The State Department notified Congress on Friday, invoking an “emergency” authorization, of the sale to its Israeli ally of 13,981 120 mm shells equipping the Merkava battle tanks engaged in the offensive in Palestinian territory, according to press releases of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Business and Pentagon.

A delivery worth more than $106 million

This military equipment represents a value of 106.5 million dollars.

“Secretary of State (Antony Blinken) determined and justified in detail to Congress that there was an urgency to immediately sell this equipment to the Israeli government (…) without the parliamentary review required by the legislation on control of arms exports,” said the American. diplomacy.

On Wednesday, Congress, divided between a House of Representatives with a Republican majority and Democratic senators with a majority but themselves fractured, had failed to move forward on a huge aid plan of more than 106 billion dollars insisted on by Democratic President Joe Biden, including funds. for Ukraine and Israel.

“It is crucial to US national interests to help Israel”

“The United States is committed to the security of Israel and it is crucial to its national interests to help Israel develop and maintain a strong self-defense capacity,” the State Department further justified. .

Despite sometimes tense diplomatic relations, Washington is Israel’s main supporter and has provided it with $3.8 billion in military aid per year since 2016, under the presidency of Barack Obama.

The United States vetoed a UN Security Council resolution late Friday calling for an “immediate humanitarian ceasefire” in Gaza.

20 Minutes with AFP

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