A multibillion-pound order for a second tranche of Typhoon combat jets for Saudi Arabia could be delayed due to the recent death of the country’s Air Force commander, according to the new boss of the British government’s defense and security export arm.
“It does change the dynamic as power is closely held by a small group [in Saudi Arabia]. I don’t believe it will change the sentiment to the Typhoon — they are committed to the program — but in terms of timing it might. They will have to reassess where they are, reorganize, get their structures right. It does have an effect. We don’t know what that is yet; we will have to wait and see,” Stephen Phipson, the head of the Defence & Security Organisation, told reporters at a briefing during the Paris Air Show on Tuesday.
Saudi Air Force commander Lt. Gen. Mohammed Al-Shaalan’s death was announced June 10 after little more than a year in post. […]