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Saudi Arabia Secretly Purchased Ballistic Missile Tech From China: Report


Originally appeared on middleeasteye.net

Saudi Arabia has “significantly” expanded its ballistic missile programme through recent purchases from China, CNN reported on Wednesday.

The purchases expanded both its missile infrastructure and technology, the news agency said, citing three unidentified sources with direct knowledge of the matter.

Saudi Arabia Secretly Purchased Ballistic Missile Tech From China: Report

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman attends meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping in February (AFP/File photo)

Key Congressional Democrats discovered the weapons expansion programme outside of “regular US government channels”, CNN reported.

The legislators told the news agency they concluded the Trump administration had knowledge of the weapons deal and deliberately left Congress out of a series of meetings where they would have been briefed on the purchases.

While Saudi Arabia is the US’s top arms buyer, it is barred from purchasing ballistic missiles from Washington under a 1987 regulation that prevents the sale of rockets capable of carrying weapons of mass destruction.

The purchases are particularly worrying to a Congress that has been attempting to limit Saudi Arabia’s weapons capabilities for months, amid growing concerns over the devastating Saudi-led war in Yemen.

On Wednesday, key US senators from both major parties introduced 22 separate resolutions in an attempt to block arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

The resolutions aim to stop the $8bn sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia, pushed through by the Trump administration without congressional oversight late last month.

The sale was pushed through by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who declared a state of emergency on 24 May, citing tensions with Iran as a means to strip Congress of its authority to halt the sales.

Since the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the hands of Saudi government agents last year, Congress has passed a series of measures to denounce Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in defiance of US President Donald Trump.

Congress also passed a resolution that aimed to end Washington’s support for Saudi-led coalition forces in Yemen, but Trump vetoed that measure.

In March, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) released a report that showed an 87 percent increase in arms flows to the Middle East over the past five years.

The defence think-tank’s annual survey showed that Saudi Arabia became the world’s top arms importer between 2014-18, with an increase of 192 percent over the preceding five years.



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  • You can call me Al

    How strange. I do not think this is a good move by the Chinese, it also makes no sense as China and Russia has united and spoken about the defence of Iran.

    • AM Hants

      For some reason I do not believe it. Owing to those who are demonising China at the moment and is it just some psy-ops article, to cause concern?

      There again, I could be wrong.

      • You can call me Al

        I am with you on that girl, it sounds FAKE.

        Do you believe this “While Saudi Arabia is the US’s top arms buyer, it is barred from purchasing ballistic missiles from Washington under a 1987 regulation that prevents the sale of rockets capable of carrying weapons of mass destruction.
        ” ?

        What makes it even more ridiculous is that every MSM whore is spouting the same story, therefore i would bet a fiver that the ____ sold ___ missiles to the rag heads.

        • AM Hants

          Must admit my first thought, why buy from China, when they spend so much in another country, who like to brag about their nuclear technology.

          • Sinbad2

            Only rumors, but it has been suggested that the sudden advance in Iranian rocket guidance was because China sold them key technologies.
            China treats all nations equally, western nations are obviously racist, it’s a good move by China.

          • AM Hants

            Smiling, whilst reading your comment. I do like the axis of Russia, Iran and China and always smile, when I see one helping the other.

          • You can call me Al

            OK, to me it sounds strange thinking of this new wonderful alliance they have with Russia and the fact that have now openly stated that they would back Iran.

            Remember we are allowed to heatedly discuss and then take it out on others.

          • Ronald

            Very good, very funny.

          • AM Hants

            I have always thought, events at the moment, are two sides of a family argument and is it all designed this way. Especially, for China to end up with the ‘big prize’.

            Does not bother me, owing to the fact I favour the side of the family argument, where they do not resort to World War and regime change, to implement their policy.

            At the end of the day, we are all being played, and just the pawns in the family game of chess.

            Might be wrong though.

        • Sinbad2

          Even in the first world war when Britain used Arabs as mercenaries against the Turks, they would not let the Arabs have artillery.
          They are useful fools to the great powers, nothing more.

          • You can call me Al

            We did not need Arabs, we had Lawrence of Arabia…

    • vaderfater

      Russia and China will never defeat Iran.

      • You can call me Al

        Hu what, I stated “it also makes no sense as China and Russia has united and spoken about the defence of Iran.”…… read it again and again, until you read what I said and then apologise please.

        • vaderfater

          You are right, bro.

          • You can call me Al

            No worries mate. Thanks.

  • Rob

    Native American should immediately kick out all white European migrants from its land back to Europe. They don’t deserve to be there.

  • verner

    but to purchase something they can not apply in any practical way without the expertise from either the seller of from the squatters (provided under saudi/squatters agreement of cooperation against Iran), since the saudis are incapable of any technical developments and even less so when we’re in the higher stratosphere of technicalities, doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. but on the other hand mohammed bin salman has a lot of dough to waste, think leonardi da vince.

    and mohammed bin salman, bought a leonardi da vince painting and paid 450 million bucks, for what more and more is deemed a fake (or from leonardi’s studio value at 1,5 million bucks) has something to prove to get out from being the laughingstock of the world (in particular if the seller was a person of jewish heritage).

  • Rob

    Putin will visit Pakistan this month in June 2019 to inaugurate Iran Pakistan oil and gas pipeline to link China and India.

  • Rob

    Saudis are looking for building its own space agency. Saudis want to build it’s own manufacturing plants in Saudia to manufacture the next generation Asia largest optical telescopes, space launch vehicles and satellites for which Saudi officials will soon visit China.

    Saudis will also build the next generation space port to serve for space tourism and to build colony on moon. They will also launch satellites. All these will give a great economic, manufacturing and scientific boost to the country.

  • Peter Moy

    I would not be surprised by this development if true. Back in the 1980s the Saudis purchased some Chinese DF-3 (the Einsteins and knuckleheads at the Pentagon call it the CSS-3) medium range ballistic missiles armed with a conventional high explosive warhead. By now they must be past their useful service life. I wonder what happened to these missiles.

    • Sinbad2

      Supposedly Pakistan built nuclear warheads for those missiles.

  • d’Artagnan

    With all due respect, the Saudis simply don’t have the skills, education or infrastructure to manufacture anything, let alone high-tech missiles. They have bought close to a trillion dollars in western weaponry since the 1960’s with the third largest military budget in the world, but if the quagmire in Yemen in an indicator, then these missiles will not help much.


  • Xoli Xoli

    USA and Israel weapons uselessness was tested in Iraq,Afghanistan, Libya and Syria war.No monarch and mullahs are approaching China (Saudi) and Russia (Erdogan).

  • Xoli Xoli

    Bought for Israel and USA NATO for testing purpose.