The U.S. State Department has approved the possible sale of twenty-four AH-64E Apache Attack helicopters to Qatar, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announced on 9 May.
The Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency notified Congress of the possible sale on Thursday.
Qatar to buy additional AH-64E helicopters with spare parts and related equipment. The Government of Qatar has requested to buy also T700-GE-701D engines, modern sensors and navigation systems with two thousand five hundred AGM-114R Hellfire missiles.
“This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a friendly country that continues to be an important force for political and economic progress in the Middle East. Qatar is host to the U.S. Central Command forces and serves as a critical forward-deployed location in the region. The acquisition of these helicopters will allow for integration with U.S. forces for training exercises, which contributes to regional security and interoperability”, according to the DSCA.
Also noted that the proposed sale of the AH-64E Apache helicopters will supplement the Qatar Emiri Air Force’s previous procurement of twenty-four AH-64Es, which are capable of meeting its requirements for close air support, armed reconnaissance, and anti-tank warfare missions. The helicopters will provide a long-term defensive and offensive capability to the Qatar peninsula as well as enhance the protection of key oil and gas infrastructure and platforms.
The AH-64E attack helicopter is the latest version of the AH-64, used by the US Army. It is also known as Apache Guardian. This gunship comes with new sensors, avionics and has improved night operation capabilities. Furthermore, the AH-64E helicopter can control a couple of UAVs.
This attack helicopter is operated by a crew of 2, including pilot and gunner.
The AH-64 Apache is the world’s most advanced multi-role combat helicopter and is used by the U.S. Army and a growing number of international defense forces.
Boeing delivered the first U.S. Army Apache AH-64A in January 1984. Since then, the U.S. Army and other nations have received more than 2,200 AH-64 Apache attack helicopters. Boeing’s global customers for the Apache include Egypt, Greece, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Korea, Kuwait, the Netherlands, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.