US approves $1 bln Qatar arms deal despite Gulf crisis


The United States government on Wednesday approved a $1.1 billion deal to service Qatar’s F-15 fighter jets despite the diplomatic stand-off between the Gulf emirate and its neighbors.

Qatar, home to one of the largest US military bases in the Middle East, is locked in a bitter dispute with Washington’s other Arab allies in the region, led by Saudi Arabia.

US President Donald Trump took Riyadh’s side in June when Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Egypt cut diplomatic ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism.

But Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has taken a more cautious line, attempting to broker an agreement to cool ties and build a regional front…



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