Qatar to buy 12 Rafale fighter jets amid Gulf crisis

A Rafale fighter jet takes off for a military exercise at the Mont-de-Marsan airbase, southwestern France, on February 10, 2017. / AFP/

DOHA, Qatar (AFP) — Qatar announced Thursday it had agreed to buy 12 French-built Rafale fighter jets, with an option for 36 others, during a state visit by President Emmanuel Macron.

The deal, which follows Qatar’s purchase of 24 Dassault Aviation-built Rafale fighter jets in 2015, comes as the emirate is hit by a trade and diplomatic boycott by neighbouring countries in the region’s worst political crisis in years.

© Agence France-Presse