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U.K. Defense Secretary Michael Fallon announced a new agreement with France for the production of next-generation missiles.
French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian visited London to formally reaffirm the defense relationship between the two countries, leading to an agreement on sharing new technologies and the development of new weapons. One new missile is the anti-ship Sea Venom missile, which will be produced by missile contractor MBDA.
The new agreement follows an earlier effort by both governments to increase collaboration in missile systems, beginning in 2010.
“Our defense relationship with France continues to thrive,” Fallon said in a statement. “The joint development of next generation missiles is just the latest example of this.”
The meeting between the two defense ministry heads also solidified the close security relationship between the U.K. and France, including the major exercise Griffin Strike in April 2016, which will involve armed forces from both countries, work to ensure safety of nuclear weapons, cooperation on counter-terrorism operations, and cybersecurity.
France wants U.S. supply of Hellfire missilesWashington (UPI) Nov 5, 2015 – France is seeking to purchase 200 Hellfire missiles from the United States to support operations against Islamist insurgents in Mali and Northern Africa.
The tactical weapons would be carried by France’s Tiger attack helicopters, providing the capability to engage targets with minimal collateral damage.
The missiles would be supplied from existing U.S. Army stock and not from a defense contractor, the U.S. Defense and Security Cooperation Agency said.
DSCA is the Pentagon agency that manages the U.S. Foreign Military Sale program. It made its disclosure of the possible French sale in a required notification to Congress.
It said the sale, worth a total of $30 million, had passed muster with the U.S. State Department.
In addition to the 200 missiles, France is also seeking Hellfire missile kits, associated equipment, parts and logistical support.