Pentagon agrees to United States dollars 12 billion jet deal with Qatar

The aircraft purchase was completed by Qatari Minister of Defence Khalid Al Attiyah and his United States counterpart Jim Mattis in Washington, DC, according to QNA.

Tellingly, the $12 billion deal was signed despite Qatar being criticized by U.S. President Donald Trump for supporting "terrorism". It added Mattis and Attiyah had discussed current operations against Isis and the importance of de-escalating tensions in the Gulf.

The US has agreed to sell $12 billion worth of American F-15 fighters to Qatar amid an ongoing diplomatic crisis between Doha and the neighbouring Gulf countries, the media reported.

Boeing which is the maker of these fighter planes did not comment on the controversial sale.

"The nation of Qatar, unfortunately, has historically been a funder of terrorism at a very high level", Trump said in a speech at the White House last week.

Qatar hosts the biggest USA military base in the Middle East with 11,000 troops deployed to or assigned to al Udeid Air Base. Given how Trump openly sided with Saudi Arabia in one of his recent Twitter tirades, the deal also signals the lack of coordination within Trump administration.

"ICAO is presently reviewing requests from the government of Qatar to assess the flight restrictions imposed upon it by neighbouring states", according to an ICAO statement.

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Two US warships arrived at Hamad port in Qatar on Wednesday as part of a planned joint military exercise involving marine forces, Qatar's state news agency said. It is home to 10,000 American troops and a major American military base that acts as the center of US operations in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic and transport ties with Qatar a week ago, accusing it of fomenting regional unrest, supporting terrorism and getting too close to Iran, all of which Doha denies. "Turkey stands on the same distance from Qatar and Saudi Arabia", Cavusoglu said.

Taking initiative to resolve the Gulf crisis Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has landed in Doha in a first leg to his Gulf tour to mend Qatar's ties with Arab states and said the crisis should be resolved "through peace and dialogue".

Typically, Qatar Airways flights to the West flew over Saudi Arabia.

Qatar has filed complaints to the Montreal-based International Civil Aviation Organization, a UN agency, calling the Arab nations' refusal to let it fly through their airspace illegal.

"I would characterize the mood and the approach to that as being one that is hopeful, that believes that the worst is behind us", State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said Tuesday. In a statement, the organisation said it would host ministers and senior officials from Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain on Thursday.

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