Israel completes order of 17 stealth fighter jets
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Israel completes order of 17 stealth fighter jets

Jewish state finalises purchase of F-35 planes from Lockheed Martin in a deal worth over a billion pounds

IAF F-35I Adir on its debut flight within the Israeli Air Force, 13 December 2016
IAF F-35I Adir on its debut flight within the Israeli Air Force, 13 December 2016

Israel finalised a deal to order 17 more F-35 stealth fighter jets from the U.S. company Lockheed Martin.

The planes were originally authorised and ordered in November 2016, but the negotiations with the company were completed over the weekend, according to reports.

Each plane costs about £77 million ($100 million). The money comes from the 10-year, £29 billion ($38 billion) U.S. military aid package for Israel signed by President Barak Obama in September 2016. Most of the aid must be spent in the United States. The order brings to 50 the number of F-35s to be built for Israel.

Two of the F-35 jets arrived in Israel in December and were part of a hand-over ceremony from their American pilots to their Israeli pilots.

The planes are known in Israel by the moniker “Adir,” or Mighty. Six more are scheduled to arrive in Israel this year.

Delivery of all the planes is scheduled to be completed by December 2024. The planes will be fitted with unique capabilities and advanced Israeli weapon systems, Ynet reported.

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