US F-16's won't be stalled by coup-call: Egypt's army to receive more fighter jets
The United States Department of Defense plans to send four more F-16 fighter jets to Egypt in the coming weeks, according to American officials.
"There is no current change in the plan to deliver F-16s to the Egyptian military," an unnamed U.S. official told Reuters on Wednesday.
Another American official said the deliveries were likely next month. Eight more F-16 fighter jets were slated to be delivered in December.
Washington’s plan comes despite the overthrow of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi in a military coup last week.
The Obama administration said it is still reviewing whether or not to label the ouster of Morsi by the military a coup.
On Monday, White House spokesman Jay Carney said that Washington will not stop providing military aid to Egypt despite the Morsi ouster.
"We think it would not be in the best interests of the United States" to change its aid program at this time, Carney said.
According to U.S. law, financial assistance to any country whose elected head of state is deposed in a military coup is prohibited.
Republican Senator John McCain also said U.S. aid to Egypt should be cut off in accordance with U.S. law.
"It is difficult for me to conclude that what happened was anything other than a coup in which the military played a decisive role," McCain said.
The United States supplies about $1.5 billion in annual aid to Egypt, who is the second largest recipient of U.S. aid after Israel. Cairo has received more than 70 billion dollars in military and economic aid from the United States since 1948.
In an interview with Press TV, political analyst Michael Burns said the United States is trying to protect the interests of Israel regarding the recent chaos in Egypt.
“In respect to Egypt, we are trying to protect the interests of Israel,” he said.
On July 3, Morsi was unseated by the military and Adly Mansour, the chief justice of Egypt’s Supreme Constitutional Court, was sworn in as the interim president of the country the following day.