(Adds details of sale and review period)
By Patricia Zengerle
WASHINGTON, March 29 President Donald Trump's
administration has informed Congress of its plan to pursue the
$5 billion sale to Bahrain of 19 Lockheed Martin F-16
aircraft and related equipment, which was held up last year by
concerns about human rights, a congressional source said on
The State Department originally notified Congress of the
sale last September during President Barack Obama's
administration. It was pulled back because of concerns that
Bahrain had not made promised improvements to its human rights
The Trump administration has separated the human rights
issues from the transfer, the source said.
Members of Congress were not immediately available to
comment on whether they would object to the sale over human
rights concerns this time.
The $4.867 billion sale includes the aircraft, 23 engines,
radars and other avionics, air-to-air and air-to-ground ordnance
and related equipment.
The latest notice sent to Congress provides for 40 days of
additional congressional review, then a formal notice to
Congress as required by the Arms Export Control Act, after which
the licenses for the sale would be approved.
Lockheed Martin declined comment.
(Reporting by Patricia Zengerle; Additional reporting by Mike
Stone; Editing by Peter Cooney)