US signs $3.5 billion arms sale to UAE

WASHINGTON - The United States has signed a $3.5 billion sale of an advanced anti-missile interception system to the United Arab Emirates, part of an accelerating military buildup of its friends and allies near Iran.
The deal, signed on December 25 and announced on Friday night by the US Defense Department, "is an important step in improving the region's security through a regional missile defense architecture," Pentagon press secretary George Little said in a statement.
The US Congress had been notified of the proposed sale in September 2008 by former President George W. Bush's administration. At that time, the system built by Lockheed Martin Corp had been projected to involve more missiles, more "fire control" units, more radar sets.