The United States is ready to consider arms deals with Libya, a former foe, that could include transport aircraft and systems for coastal and border security, the U.S. Defense Department said on Friday.

“We will consider Libyan requests for defense equipment that enables them to build capabilities in areas that serve our mutual interest,” said Lt. Col. Elizabeth Hibner of the Army, a department spokeswoman.

As examples, she referred to systems used for border and coastal security as well as “theater airlift,” by implication aircraft such as Lockheed Martin Corp’s C-130 Hercules that can ferry forces and equipment.

Libya entered a new era with the U.S. military in January with the signing of what the Pentagon calls a “non-binding statement of intent” aimed at developing bilateral military ties.

Relations had warmed after Libya gave up banned weapons programs in 2003, and again after settlement of compensation claims for attacks including the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, for which Libya has accepted responsibility.

“Initial contacts between the two militaries have been very positive,” Hibner said. “Both sides recognize that since we haven’t had good relations in almost four decades, we both have a lot to relearn about each other’s countries and policies and how to work together.”

Charles Taylor, a spokesman for the Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency, said Libya already had requested approval to buy Humvees, the rugged light trucks that are the vehicular backbone of U.S. forces worldwide.



One Response

  1. Its good Libya its finally coming around..being a rugged state does not pay.

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