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US okays $1.9-billion weapon system to India

US okays $1.9-billion weapon system to India
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The United States has approved the sale of an Integrated Air Defence Weapon System (IADWS) to India for an estimated cost of $1.9 billion to modernise...

Washington: The United States has approved the sale of an Integrated Air Defence Weapon System (IADWS) to India for an estimated cost of $1.9 billion to modernise its armed forces and to expand its existing air defence architecture to counter threats posed by air attacks.

The Trump Administration has notified to the US Congress of its determination to sell India the IADWS, the Defence Security Cooperation Agency said Monday. The entire system is estimated to cost $1.867 billion, the State Department has told the Congress in a notification.

"India intends to use these defence articles and services to modernise its armed forces, and to expand its existing air defence architecture to counter threats posed by air attack," the State Department said.

The proposed sale comes amidst the massive military modernisation by China which is also flexing its military muscles in the strategic Indo-Pacific region. It also comes ahead of a possible visit by President Donald Trump to India later this month.

Trump is set to visit India on a two-day trip between February 23 and 26 and both sides are in the process of fine-tuning his schedule, according to sources in New Delhi.

India and the US are set to seal a trade deal during Trump's planned visit, they said.

The proposed sale IADWS will contribute to India's military goal to update its capability while further enhancing greater interoperability between India, the US, and other allies, the State Department added.

According to the notification, India had requested to the US to buy an IADWS.

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