France sells 24 Rafale fighter jets to Qatar, a 6.3-billion-euro deal

France has announced a 6.3-billion-euro ($7 billion) deal to sell 24 Rafale fighter jets to Qatar.

The deal is to be signed next Monday in Qatar's capital, Doha, in the presence of the French president, Francois Hollande, presidency services announced Thursday.

With this sale, French arms exports already exceed 15 billion euros ($16.8 billion) this year, a defense official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter.

Qatar becomes the third buyer of France's delta-winged Rafale, manufactured by Dassault Aviation.

India has announced plans to buy 36 Rafale earlier this month and Egypt bought 24 Rafale in February.