Bahrain is set to upgrade the M270 Multiple Launch Rocket Systems (MLRS) to better combat current and future threats.

The island country in Western Asia placed a request with the US to upgrade nine M270 MLRS to an M270 A1 minimum configuration.

The potential $176m foreign military sale (FMS) was approved by the US State Department. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) notified the US Congress regarding the possible sale.

The scope of the potential upgrade will include the delivery of the Common Fire Control System (CFCS), the Improved Launcher Mechanical System (ILMS), a 600hp engine and associated engine compartment modifications, an Improved Electronics Distribution Box (IEDB), and other hardware.

The sale will include spare parts, logistics and engineering support, test equipment, integration and test support, and software delivery, among others.

Lockheed Martin will be the principal contractor.

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In a statement, the DSCA said: “This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a Major Non-Nato ally that is an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East.”

Besides combatting emerging threats, the upgrade will enable Bahrain to enhance interoperability with systems used by US forces and other Gulf countries.

The combat-proven MLRS M270 fires surface-to-surface rockets. It can fire up to 12 MLRS rockets in less than one minute.

Last month, the US State Department approved a potential $6bn FMS of 250 Abrams tanks and associated equipment, to Poland. Poland had previously requested 250 M1A2SEPv3 Abrams main battle tanks.