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Tue 20 Nov 2012 05:30 PM

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Oman eyes $96m deal for guided missiles

US Defence Security Cooperation Agency announces possible sale to Oman gov't

Oman eyes $96m deal for guided missiles
(Image for illustrative purposes)

Oman is interested in buying guided missiles worth $96m from the US, according to the Defence Security Cooperation Agency.

In a statement, it said it had notified Congress of a possible sale to the Government of Oman for 400 Javelin guided missiles and associated equipment, parts, training and logistical support.

It said that the proposed sale of the Javelin anti-tank weapon system would "improve Oman’s capability to meet current and future threats and provide greater security for its critical oil and natural gas infrastructure".

"Oman will use the enhanced capability to strengthen its homeland defence. Oman will have no difficulty absorbing these missiles into its armed forces," the statement added.

The principal contractors will be Raytheon/Lockheed Martin Javelin Joint Venture in Orlando, Florida and Tucson, Arizona.

Three of the six Gulf states last week topped the world’s top ten most militarised nations, according to the latest Global Militarisation Index by the Bonn International Centre for Conversion (BICC).

The Middle East is the most militarised region in the world with all of its countries ranked among the top 40, according to the index.

Kuwait is considered the most militarised in the GCC in seventh position globally followed by Bahrain (9th) and Saudi Arabia (10th).

Israel topped the global index ahead of Singapore, Russia, Syria and Jordan. Bahrain, which last year was forced to bring in troops from Saudi Arabia and the UAE to shore up security amid a wave of anti-government protests, made its first entry into the top ten.

Qatar, which last week requested $6.5bn worth of US military equipment, is considered the least militarised Gulf state at 43rd globally while Oman and the UAE ranked 11th and 13th, respectively.