Egypt president says resumption of US military aid helps combat extremism and boosts security

Egypt's president says the United States' release of military aid previously suspended will help boost Cairo's ability to combat extremists in the region.

Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi, who overthrew Egypt's elected but divisive Islamist president in 2013, said in a statement Wednesday that the decision supports the strategic objectives of both countries in combating terrorism and extremism and maintaining security, particularly in Egypt's restive Sinai Peninsula.

The White House said President Barack Obama notified el-Sissi in a phone call Tuesday that the U.S. would be sending 12 F-16 fighter jets, 20 missiles and up to 125 tank kits, while continuing to request $1.3 billion in military assistance for Egypt.

The White House said Egypt will remain the second-largest recipient of U.S. foreign military financing worldwide, after Israel.