March 24, 2018

Talks turn to defense on final day Saudi crown prince's United Kingdom visit

11 March 2018, 01:32 | Kara Nash

BREAKING: Saudis prep for WAR – Kingdom to buy 50 fighter jets from UK

Saudi Arabia Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman Attends Audience With Queen Elizabeth II At Buckingham Palace

Britain has signed a multi-billion-pound preliminary order from Saudi Arabia for 48 Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets, military equipment maker BAE Systems said on Friday.

Saudi Arabia Is to sign a deal with United Kingdom aerospace giant BAE to buy 48 Typhoon fighter jets.

Shares in the group ended the session over 2 per cent higher on the day after the news hit.

The £100-million ($138-million) agreement, the first of its kind, was signed between the UK government and Saudi Arabia's KS Relief during a visit to London by the kingdom's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the British PoliticsHome website, which reports on parliamentary affairs, reported on Friday.

There was also an estimated £65bn of additional trade agreed for the coming years as part of the Crown Prince's Vision 2030 economic plan.

Sky News Defence Correspondent Alistair Bunkall said the deal is expected to be announced by Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson and the Crown Prince later this afternoon.

In December, however, a deal with Qatar to buy 24 Typhoons bolstered its outlook, and Mr Woodburn at the time said more deals could follow.

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The crown prince, who is heir to his 82-year-old father, King Salman, said there were "huge opportunities" to boost trade between the two countries and they had to work together to deal with "failed states. terrorist and extremist organisations" in the Middle East.

Mrs May defended the UK's ties with Saudi Arabia earlier this week, saying all arms sales are strictly regulated.

In a cable to HM Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, while wrapping up his UK visit, HRH Prince Mohammed bin Salman expressed profound thanks and gratitude her for the warm welcome and generous hospitality accorded to him and his accompanying delegation.

However, the UK's opposition and aid sector have reacted angrily to the deal amid growing concerns over Saudi Arabia's war crimes in neighboring Yemen.

The deal will be welcomed at Warton, Lancashire, where the swing-role combat aircraft are built by BAE Systems.

Some 5,000 people are employed by BAE Systems on the Typhoon programme, covering production and support.

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