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Tuesday, April 07, 2015

State Department Approves Pakistan Arms Request

AH-1Z ViperThe State Department has approved Pakistan’s request to buy almost $1 billion in U.S.-made attack helicopters, missiles and other equipment aimed at fighting insurgents in the country’s mountainous north and west regions.

U.S. defense companies are engaged in a three-way tussle with Russia and China to sell weapons to Pakistan, complicated by the need to avoid upsetting neighbor India and its even larger arms’ import market.

The Pentagon said Monday that Pakistan had requested 15 AH-1Z Viper helicopters made by the Bell arm of Textron Inc., as well as 1,000 Hellfire missiles produced by Lockheed Martin Corp. and a host of other communications and training equipment with a total value of $952 million, according to a notification to Congress, which needs to approve any sale.

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