The sale of Predator surveillance drones to the UAE has been tentatively approved by senior US lawmakers, in what would be the first sale of the aircraft outside of Nato.

After nearly two years of deliberations, the US state department began talks with the senate and house foreign affairs committees in December, both of which approved the sale by defence contractor General Atomics to the UAE last week, US officials told Bloomberg News yesterday.

Congress is expected to be officially notified this week, with legislators then having 30 days to block the sale. […]