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France’s Hollande Discusses Dassault Rafale Jet Sales With Qatar

French President Francois Hollande said he discussed the possible sale of Dassault Systemes SA-made Rafale fighter jets with Qatar.

Dassault and Qatar are in negotiations, he said at a press conference in the Arab emirate’s capital Doha. France provides as much as three quarters of Qatar’s military hardware, Hollande said.

The country, which shares the world’s biggest gas reservoir with Iran, wants to replace its existing fleet of 12 Mirage fighter jets with 24 to 36 new jets, Reuters reported June 19. Dassault was in discussions to sell Rafale warplanes to the United Arab Emirates in 2011.

The French President was on a two-day visit to Qatar where he met with the Emir Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani and Prime Minister Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabor Al Thani.

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