The US intends to sell arms to the UAE and Saudi Arabia, as otherwise these countries will buy it from Russia and China, said Acting US Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan.
When asked if he supports the arms sales outside of regular congressional oversight, Shanahan said: "My preference is always to follow the process.”
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has ordered the State Department to approve 22 pending $8.1 billion arms sales to Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the UAE to counter Iran. In this case, the possibility of assembling a number of high-precision arms in Saudi Arabia is envisaged, CNN reported.
In accordance with the law on the control of the export of arms, the president and his administration can take such decisions in emergency cases without a 30-day legal review of upcoming deals by Congress, which was done this time.
US senators, in response, demanded the Trump administration to withdraw their decision to complete the supply of arms without consideration by Congress. Senators warn that otherwise they are ready to cancel the existing permits for the sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia and the UAE, as well as "to deprive the administration of the opportunity to bypass the congress upon future deliveries of weapons."