Iraq is reported to be "very close" to signing a letter of intent to buy up to 36 Lockheed Martin F-16 jets, according to Bloomberg.
Major General Russ Handy, a senior U.S. Air Force general in Iraq, told reporters at the Pentagon that Iraq would buy a first installment of 18 aircraft, with a potential total of 36.
“These are very modern aircraft ... They should have fairly modern capabilities. It’s a multi-role fighter”, he said, adding that the best case for first delivery is late 2013,.
The agreement is awaiting signature of a formal “letter of offer and acceptance” that signals an Iraqi government commitment to purchase a specified number of aircraft, the cost and payment schedule, Handy said. “We are hearing very encouraging words.”