8 Aug 2011

Polisario ‘concerned’ over Morocco’s purchase of US F-16 fighters

Morocco’s acquisition of a first batch of 24 F-16 fighter jets from the United States has raised concerns form the Algeria-backed Polisario Front, but observers say Morocco’s move is part of an air force modernization program not designed to threaten neighbours.
Four F-16s were delivered to Morocco and another seven would be delivered at the beginning of 2012 and the remaining 13 in the following months, Major General Margaret Woodward of the US Air Force told reporters on Thursday in the southern city of Marrakesh, according to AFP.

west sahara

The Benguerir air base north of Marrakesh took delivery of the aircrafts in a ceremony attended by senior officers of the Moroccan and US military, the MAP news agency reported.
The 24 F-16s, the CD block 50-52 model, were among the most modern versions available, Mr. Woodward said.
The contract with the United States, which includes the sale of equipment, services and pilot training, is worth an estimated $2.4 billion (1.7 billion euros).

Al Arabiya