Swiss panel criticizes move to buy fighter jets

AP News
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Posted: Aug 21, 2012 2:00 PM
Swiss panel criticizes move to buy fighter jets

GENEVA (AP) — A key parliament committee has criticized but decided not to oppose the government's decision to buy Swedish fighter jets.

A national security policy committee said in a highly anticipated report that the proposed order of 22 Gripen fighters carries "the most risks" in several aspects, including the likelihood of the costs being higher than expected.

The committee voted 9-6 in the Swiss capital Bern on Tuesday to reject a move to block the proposed purchase.

The Swiss Cabinet decided in November to order the fighters from Sweden's Saab AB for 3.1 billion francs ($3.19 billion), despite the Air Force's positive reviews for the Rafale by Dassault Aviation of France and the Eurofighter from a European consortium.

The defense minister and military commanders have strongly defended the Gripen's selection.