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U.S. to send Jordan fighter jets, Patriots

June 4, 2013 at 6:42 AM

AMMAN, Jordan, June 4 (UPI) -- The United States will send Patriot missiles and F-16 fighter jets to enhance Jordan's security and tackle the spillover of Syrian violence, a spokesman said.

"The government acknowledges that the U.S. is sending Patriot missiles and F-16 jets to Jordan. This is the result of continuous discussions over the last few weeks," Jordanian government spokesman Mohammad Momani told The Jordan Times. "This is in line with Jordan's declared intention to acquire advanced weapons, and comes in line with our military and defense cooperation with the U.S."

In addition, 200 U.S. military planners will be dispatched to Jordan to train the Jordanian Army to deal with a chemical weapons crisis in Syria or a major humanitarian disaster, the newspaper said.

Momani was responding to a CNN report aired Monday that said U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel had approved the delivery of the missile system and fighter jets, the Jordanian newspaper said.

U.S. Central Command spokesman Lt. Col. T.G. Taylor told CNN the weapons will be used in the upcoming joint military exercise Eager Lion, and will probably remain in Jordan when the exercise ends.

The Eager Lion military drill scheduled later this month will involve the participation of more than 15,000 troops from 18 Arab and other countries including the United States.

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