French official: Egypt to buy 24 Rafale jet fighters for 5.2B euros; jets' first foreign sale

A French official says Egypt has agreed to buy 24 Rafale jets as part of a 5.2 billion-euro (US$5.93 billion) defense deal, marking the first foreign sale of the French-made fighters.

The official said French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian was expected to travel to Cairo on Monday to sign the accord. The official spoke only on condition that his name not be used, citing ministry protocol.

The sale, if confirmed, would mark the culmination of years of French efforts to sell the multi-role fighters built by Dassault Aviation. A company spokesman could not immediately be reached for comment.

The official said a French FREMM frigate and missiles made by MBDA were also part of the deal.