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U.S. Approves $1.25 Billion Sale of Mobile-Artillery-Rocket Systems To Romania

The M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) is a U.S. light multiple-rocket launcher.

WASHINGTON -- U.S. officials say the State Department has approved the sale of mobile-artillery-rocket systems and related equipment valued at $1.25 billion to Romania.

The U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said on August 18 that the State Department approved the sale to "support the foreign-policy and national-security objectives of the United States by helping to improve the security of a NATO ally."

The Pentagon agency, which is responsible for arms sales to Washington's allies and partners, said it notified Congress of the proposed sale on August 17.

No specific time frame was given. But deals of this kind for NATO allies include a 15-day congressional-review period.

NATO has moved to bolster its presence in Eastern Europe following Russia's 2014 annexation of Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula and backing of separatists in eastern Ukraine. Moscow has accused the military alliance of stoking tensions in the region.

Romania has requested 54 high-mobility artillery-rocket-system launchers and related equipment that would "strengthen its homeland defense and deter regional threats," the DSCA said.

Lockheed-Martin is the prime contractor for the military hardware, officials said.

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