France said on Tuesday it will begin delivering 30 Dassault warplanes to Egypt from 2024 in a 4 billion euro ($4.8 billion) deal, as it strengthens ties with a partner it considers vital in fighting Islamist militants.
In December, President Emmanuel Macron drew criticism from rights groupswhen he said he would not make the sale of weapons to Egypt conditional on human rights because he did not want to weaken Cairo’s ability to counter militancy in the region.
Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly said the deal, confirmed on Tuesday, illustrated the “strategic nature of the partnership” between the countries and would secure 7,000 jobs in France over three years.
“Our two countries are resolutely committed to the fight against terrorism and work for stability,” she said.
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