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Taiwan confirms F-16 upgrade deal with US

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TAIPEI (AP): Taiwan’s Defense Ministry has confirmed a US agreement to upgrade the island’s fleet of F-16 A/B warplanes.

In a text message Thursday, it said the defence minister “will hold a news conference to elaborate on the US decision to upgrade the planes.”

It was the first official confirmation of the deal.

The message made no mention of Taiwan’s original desire to purchase the later-generation F-16 C/D planes.

US congressional officials have told The Associated Press that the Obama administration is rejecting that request, and instead upgrading Taiwan’s existing planes.

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