France sells 2 disputed Mistral warships to Egypt after Russia deal derailed

France says it is selling two Mistral-class warships originally intended for Russia to Egypt instead.

In a statement Wednesday, the French president's office said Egypt would buy both ships. No price was given.

France agreed to refund 950 million euros ($1 billion) already paid by Russia after Paris canceled the sale, which was supposed to be the biggest arms sale ever by a NATO country to Russia but was detailed by the Ukrainian crisis.

Egypt also purchased 24 advanced fighter jets from France earlier this year for nearly $6 billion, as it sought international help to bomb Islamic State targets.

Mistral-class warships can carry 16 helicopter gunships, 700 troops and up to 50 armored vehicles.