BERLIN --- The U.S. government has approved integration of the U.S. Patriot PAC-3 MSE missile into a next-generation German missile defense system, a spokesman said on Friday, a key step toward completion of a long-delayed multibillion-dollar arms sale.
The decision followed high-level talks by German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen and U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis this summer, two sources familiar with the issue said.
Germany selected the Medium Extended Air Defence System (MEADS) built by Lockheed Martin Corp and European missile maker MBDA over Raytheon’s Patriot air and missile defense system in 2015, but it has taken years to move forward on the new defensive system called TLVS.
U.S. Air Force Col. Mike Andrews, the Pentagon spokesman, confirmed the use of the MSE missile had been approved for use in the German program, but gave no further details.
“This is a significant step forward. The impasse has been solved,” said one of the sources, who was not authorized to speak publicly. (end of excerpt)
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