Washington approves sale of anti-aircraft missiles to Finland

Washington approves sale of anti-aircraft missiles to Finland
Stinger missile

The US government has given the green light for the sale to Finland of portable Stinger anti-aircraft missiles worth some $380 million, Washington announced on Thursday.

The Finns, who have applied to join NATO, are looking for 350 heat-seeking missiles plus equipment, but the sale of the sensitive equipment first had to be approved by Washington.

This "critical weaponry" would strengthen Finland’s defence and deterrence capabilities, in addition to supporting the priorities of the US Army's European Command, the US government said in a statement.

Washington also approved - on Monday - the sale of more than 80 precision missiles to Helsinki for a total of $323 million.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Finland and Sweden submitted a joint request in May to join the Atlantic Alliance, renouncing decades of military neutrality.

The request, which must be unanimously accepted by all 30 NATO member states, has since been endorsed by all but Turkey and Hungary.

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