Saudi Arabia commissions new batch of F-15s

By Ryan Maass  |  Jan. 25, 2017 at 4:02 PM
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Jan. 25 (UPI) -- Saudi Arabia commissioned a new batch of U.S.-made F-15SA fighters during a ceremony commending the anniversary of the King Faisal Air Academy.

The ceremony was attended by Saudi Arabia's King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz and high-ranking defense officials. Gulf News reports Saudi Arabia intends to use the aircraft to bolster its fleet as it continues its military intervention in Yemen.

"The Kingdom is keen to acquire this kind of modern aircraft, to protect their lands and the holy sites, its national interests, its economic capabilities and development, and the maintenance of security and stability to ensure peace in the region," Prince Mohammed bin Salman said.

According to Al Arabiya, the F-15s delivered to the country are among the most advanced F-15 variants ever built.

The fighters are equipped with advanced warfighting technologies such as Active Electronically Scanned Array radars and ASM-135 missiles. The F-15SA has double the missile-carrying capacity of other variants such as the F-15C or the F-15E.

The kingdom purchased 84 of the planes from the United States in 2011 under a nearly $30 billion agreement that also included Black Hawk and Apache helicopters.

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