Egypt in advanced talks to purchase 12 Chinese J-10 Vigorous Dragon fighter jets
Egypt is in advanced talks with China for the purchase of around 12 of the latest version of the J-10 Vigorous Dragon multirole combat fighter jet, The New Arab reports.
Talks between the two sides started last year and the North African country is expected to send representatives of its Air force to the Chinese state-owned Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group at the International Maritime and Aeronautical Exhibition in Malaysia later this week, the London-based media stressed. J-10 Vigorous Dragon, multirole fighter aircraft, is China’s latest fourth generation combat aircraft capable of flying at a maximum speed of 2,327km/h at high altitudes.
Cairo’s turning to Beijing for arms deal is likely to anger Washington which is a traditional security partner and provider of $1.3 billion in military aid annually to the Arab country. Egyptian authorities, whose human rights records are slammed in Washington, view the U.S. administration very political.
Egypt has also ignored western sanctions against Russia amid its ongoing campaign in neighboring Ukraine. Early this month, leaked US secret documents revealed that President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi secretly planned in February to produce rockets for Russia.
The Washington Post which saw the documents reported that the Egyptian leader intended to produce 40,000 rockets for the heavily-sanctioned country and instructed officials to keep it a secret to “avoid problems with the West. Egyptian authorities denied the report and brushed aside any alleged involvement in the crisis between Russia and Ukraine.
“Egypt’s position from the beginning is based on non-involvement in this crisis and committing to maintain equal distance with both sides,” the Washington Post quoted Foreign ministry spokesperson, Ahmed Abu Zeid as saying.