The Trump administration is moving forward with a $1 billion sale of advanced drones and precision-guided munitions to Morocco, Reuters reported. The report cited anonymous sources who said the administration sent a notification of the potential sale to Congress on Friday.
The news comes a day after Morocco and Israel agreed to normalize relations. On Thursday, Reuters reported that the US was looking to sell four MQ-9B SeaGuardian drones made by General Atomics to Morocco. Friday’s report said the sale also included munitions made by Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and Boeing.
Congress could block the sale, but is not expected to oppose it. The Senate failed to pass resolutions on Thursday that aimed to stop a $23 billion weapons sale to the UAE that is seen as Abu Dhabi’s reward for opening up diplomatic ties with Israel.
While news of the sale to Morocco comes after they agreed to normalize with Israel, Rabat is no stranger to buying US arms. A report released in September found that Morocco buys 91 percent of its military equipment from the US, including F-16 fighter jets, Apache attack helicopters, and armored vehicles. In 2019, Morocco was Washington’s top customer in the Middle East and North Africa, agreeing to deals worth $10.3 billion.
As a reward for agreeing to normalize with Israel, the US recognized Morocco’s sovereignty over Western Sahara. Morocco annexed the area in 1975 when the Spanish withdrew, and fought a series of wars against the Polisario Front, a group that represents the indigenous Sahrawi people and still claims the territory today.