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F-16 Fighting Falcon News

Rollout of first Israeli F-16I scheduled for next week

November 8, 2003 (by Lieven Dewitte) - An Israeli delegation will attend the rollout of the first Israeli F-16I Fighting Falcon, scheduled for Friday, November 14th, 2003. The ceremony will take place at Lockheed Martin's Fort Worth facility in Texas.
Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz flies to Washington next week for key meetings with with his American counterpart Donald Rumsfeld, Secretary of State Colin Powell, National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice and other top defense and foreign policy officials as well as US Senators.

The meetings are scheduled for next Tuesday and Wednesday. Accompanying Mofaz will be director general of the Defense Ministry Amos Yaron, who is currently in Korea, and Amos Gilad, the head of the Security and Politico bureau.

Mofaz will be joining a contingent of IDF/AF pilots and OC Air Force Maj.-Gen. Dan Halutz in Ft. Worth for next Friday's rollout ceremony of the first of 102 F-16I aircraft. That $4.5 billion contract is the largest ever defense deal ever made in the history of Israel. The aircraft were purchased with part of the annual $2.2 billion in military grants from the United States.