The Department of State has given the green light for the delivery of the NASAMS air defense systems to Kuwait.

The US State Department has authorized the sale of the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS) and the Medium-Range Air Defense System (MRADS) to Kuwait, the Pentagon announced Thursday.

In a statement, the US Defense Cooperation Agency called Kuwait “an important ally outside of NATO.” The proposed deal, which is worth $3 billion, will enhance the country’s ability to “defend against regional malign actors” and improve interoperability with weapons used by US troops and other Gulf countries, the agency said.

In addition, the package includes seven AN/MPQ-64FI Sentinel air defense radars, dozens of missiles of various types, and other equipment.

The news comes two weeks after the United States approved a $250 million contract to sell M102 Abrams tank ammunition to Kuwait.

Bordering Iraq to the north and Saudi Arabia to the south, oil-rich Kuwait is a member of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). In early August, Washington authorized the sale of military equipment to two other members of the organization: Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile interceptors to the United Arab Emirates and MIM-104 Patriot surface-to-air missile systems to Saudi Arabia.

Last week, however, three members of the US Congress proposed punishing the two states for their decision to cut oil production by withdrawing troops and missile defense systems from the countries. According to lawmakers, the move to cut production means that, amid the ongoing energy crisis, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates had “chosen to side with Russia.”

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