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UPDATE 1-Amid regional tensions, Qatar buys French-made fighter jets

UPDATE 1-Amid regional tensions, Qatar buys French-made fighter jets
From Reuters - December 7, 2017

DOHA/PARIS (Reuters) - French President Emmanuel Macron sealed multi-billion dollar military and transport contracts in Qatar on Thursday, including the sale of Rafale fighter jets and hundreds of armoured vehicles, amid mounting tensions in the Middle East.

Macron is in Doha for talks with Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani on combatting the financing of terrorism at a time the Middle East is locked in a regional power struggle between Sunni Saudi Arabia and Shiite Iran.

Qatar agreed to firm up an option from 2015 to buy 12 more Dassault Aviation-made Rafale fighters, and said it could purchase a further 36. It had already bought 24 planes for about 6 billion euros ($7.11 billion), including missiles.

Thursdays deals also saw Doha commit to buying 490 armoured vehicles from defence firm Nexter, sending a signal to its neighbours after Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut political and trade with Doha in June. They accuse it of supporting terrorism, a charge Qatar denies.

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