The US administration has offered Israel another 20 Lockheed Martin F-35 stealth fighters as part of a "persuasion package" to encourage the Israeli government to agree to another three-month halt in building settlements in the disputed West Bank.

Washington hopes that an extension would enable it to achieve progress in talks between Israel and the Palestinian authority.

The offer, which also includes other classified military hardware, is being evaluated by the Israeli cabinet, which is facing hard opposition from right wing parties and settlers.

Israel and the USA in October signed a letter of offer and acceptance for the supply of 20 F-35s to the Israeli air force. Deliveries are expected to begin in 2017.

Source: Flight International