*Representational image showing MH-60R helicopters in action

The US has approved the sale of 24 anti-submarine helicopters to India in a $2.6 billion deal. The deal will further strengthen the strategic relationship between the two countries.

About a year back, India had requested the US for the helicopters.

The MH-60R helicopters nicknamed "Romeo" are manufactured by Lockheed Martin. Acquiring these helicopters will give India the capability to perform anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare missions and also perform peacetime operations like search and rescue.

"This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to strengthen the US-Indian strategic relationship and to improve the security of a major defensive partner," the US State Department said in a statement.

The Romeos will replace India's aging fleet of British-origin Sea King helicopters.

As per Lockheed Martin, the Romeos are popular around the world navies. About 300  MH-60R helicopters are in operation with various navies like that of Denmark, Australia, Saudi Arabia, etc.

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