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Gulf countries interested in Israeli air defence systems 41510154.

| 2015
Defence & Security News - (Gulf Cooperation Countries)
Gulf countries interested in Israeli air defence systems
A number of Gulf Cooperation Council member-states are interested in Israeli-made air defence systems in an effort to counter the Iranian missile threat. According to a report from the Sky News network, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates, are considering procuring  systems such as the David’s Sling and the Arrow.
Gulf countries interested in Israeli air defence systems
Rafael-Raytheon David's Sling air defence system

Nevertheless, the procurement would be made through Raytheon and other US companies, who co-developed those systems together with Israel’s Rafael. The deal would probably involve the whole of the Gulf Cooperation Council, which has been steadily transforming into an organization of collective security on a regional level.

It is reminded that Barack Obama took part in the GCC’s summit last May. During his speech he urged the members of the Council to move forward on missile defence cooperation. That would include information sharing, common C2, joint procurement programmes and operational planning. Under that frame, a US-developed system would easily integrate into the US commands in the region, such as the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Center, the Gulf Air Warfare Center and the US Combined Air Operations Center.

A US involvement would be crucial for the procurement, as the procurement of those systems directly from Israel would raise many questions in those countries. Despite the slowly improving relations between the US and Iran, the Gulf countries still consider Tehran a major threat to their internal and external security. The deal over Iran’s nuclear programme has caused frictions in their relations with the US, which is shifting its focus from the Middle East towards the Asia/Pacific region pivot.



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