Washington [USA]: The US Department of State on Monday (local time) approved the sale of arms amounting to around USD 2.2 billion to Taiwan, according to the Defence Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA).
The Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO) had requested to buy 250 MANPAD Stinger missiles and other related equipment, along with 100 M1A2T Abrams tanks, which the State Department has approved, the agency added.
The missiles will cost Taiwan an additional USD 224 million, according to Sputnik.
“This proposed sale of (108) M1A2 tanks will contribute to the modernisation of the recipient’s main battle tank fleet, enhancing its ability to meet current and future regional threats and to strengthen its homeland defence…The total estimated program cost is USD 2 billion,” the release stated.
China considers Taiwan to be a part of its territory even though the island has been de facto independent from the mainland since 1949’s civil war. Beijing has previously criticised the arms sale, adding that Taiwan is part of its internal affairs.