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Biden administration approves potential $323M arms sale to Finland

Raytheon's Patriot target vehicle is launched from Wake Island, Hawaii in a demonstration. File Photo courtesy Raytheon
Raytheon's Patriot target vehicle is launched from Wake Island, Hawaii in a demonstration. File Photo courtesy Raytheon

Nov. 28 (UPI) -- The Biden administration approved a potential arms deal with Finland worth about $323 million on Monday.

The State Department made the decision Monday to sell 40 tactical missiles and 48 Joint Standoff Weapons to Finland, as well as support the country with training. Additional equipment includes Dummy Air Training Missiles, Captive Air Training Missiles, Captive Flight Vehicles and Free Flight Vehicles.

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"There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale," the department said in a notice of sale, which is required by law.

Raytheon Missiles and Defense, based in Tucson, Ariz., is the principal contractor supplying the missiles.

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The addition of these arms will bolster Finland's defensive capabilities, particularly in air-to-air and air-to-surface combat scenarios.

The United States has supplied other Nordic nations with arms this year, including Poland. Before Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the United States approved the sale of $6 billion worth of battle tanks to the Polish military. It then agreed to a $500 million rocket system sale with Estonia. Another $1.2 million in arms sales were agreed to with Norway, Switzerland, Lithuania and Belgium earlier this month.

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"This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by improving the security of a trusted partner, which is an important force for political stability and economic progress in Europe," the notice from the State Department said.

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"It is vital to the U.S. national interest to assist Finland in developing and maintaining a strong and ready self-defense capability."

Finland borders Russia to its east and fellow NATO hopeful Sweden to its west. Sweden and Finland are two of six European Union member states that are not part of NATO. Both nations are prospective members which could be approved in the next year.

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