Saturday, April 01, 2006
The Bush administration told Congress it was tentatively planning to sell South Korea 42 air-launched Harpoon anti-ship missiles and related gear in a deal worth up to $130 million. Along with other equipment sought by Seoul, the AGM-84L missiles, built by Boeing Co, would not affect the region's "basic military balance," the Pentagon's Defence Security Cooperation Agency said in its notice. As part of the package, South Korea also requested 16 submarine-launched UGM-84L Harpoon missiles plus technical support, personnel training, data and publications, the notice said.
Seoul plans to install the Block II missiles - updated versions of its existing Harpoons - on its destroyers, submarines, patrol boats plus F-16 fighter and P-3C patrol aircraft, the security agency said. "It is vital to the US national security interest to assist our ally in developing and maintaining a strong and ready self-defence capability," it said. The notice of a proposed foreign military sale is required by US law. It does not mean the sale has been concluded.