U.S. State Department approves possible $2.2 billion arms sale to Taiwan

FILE PHOTO: Flags of Taiwan and U.S. are placed for a meeting between U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce speaks and with Su Chia-chyuan, President of the Legislative Yuan in Taipei, Taiwan March 27, 2018. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. State Department has approved the possible sale to Taiwan of M1A2T Abrams tanks, Stinger missiles and related equipment at an estimated value of $2.2 billion, the Pentagon said on Monday.

China’s Foreign Ministry said last month when the possible sale was first reported that it was seriously concerned about U.S. arms sales to self-ruled Taiwan.

The sale of the weapons requested by Taiwan, including 108 M1A2T Abrams tanks and 250 Stinger missiles, would not alter the basic military balance in the region, the Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency said.

Reporting by Mohammad Zargham; Editing by David Alexander

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