U.S. approves potential $1.1 bln arms sale to Taiwan, Pentagon says

The U.S. State Department has approved a potential $1.1 billion sale of military equipment to Taiwan, including 60 anti-ship missiles and 100 air-to-air missiles, the Pentagon said on Friday.

The package was announced in the wake of China's aggressive military drills around Taiwan following a visit to the island last month by U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the highest-ranking U.S. official to travel to Taipei in years.

The sale includes Sidewinder Missiles and related equipment at a cost of some $85.6 million, Harpoon Missiles and related equipment at an estimated $355 million cost and support for Taiwan's surveillance radar program and related equipment for an estimated $665.4 million, the Pentagon's Defense Security Cooperation Agency said.

The order reflects the continued support for Taiwan from President Joe Biden's administration as Taipei faces pressure from China, which has never ruled out using force to bring the democratically ruled island under its control.

Taipei says the People's Republic of China has never ruled the island and has no right to claim it.