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US to go ahead with F-16 delivery to Egypt

US to go ahead with  F-16 delivery to Egypt
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Washington (AP): The US is moving ahead with plans to deliver four F-16s to Egypt despite the ongoing debate about the military's overthrow of...

Washington (AP): The US is moving ahead with plans to deliver four F-16s to Egypt despite the ongoing debate about the military's overthrow of President Mohamed Mursi and whether it legally constitutes a coup that could shut off aid to the country.

Defense officials say senior administration leaders discussed the delivery and decided to let it continue. The fighters are part of a $1.3 billion package approved in 2010 that included 20 F-16s and some M1A1 Abrams tank kits. About half of the aid package has been dispersed, officials said. Eight of the F-16s were delivered in January, the next four are expected to be delivered in the coming weeks and the final eight will be sent later this year.

News of the impending weapons delivery to the Egyptian military came as the administration continued to make the case that it is staying neutral in the crisis.

The White House and State Department reiterated the view Wednesday that it would not be in the United States' national security interests to interrupt US aid to Egypt, including to the armed forces, as would be required by law if Mursi's ouster is determined to have been a coup.

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