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The Royal Australian Navy is set to phase out its troubled fleet of European-made MRH-90 Taipan helicopters in favour of U.S.-made Sikorsky Seahawks. On Oct. 8, the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) approved the sale of 12 Sikorsky MH-60R Multi-Mission Helicopters to replace the navy’s six Airbus-made MRM-90s for around $1.3 billion (US$985 million). Australia currently operates 24 MH-60Rs based at HMAS Albatross in Nowra, New South Wales. The latest purchase will expand the fleet to 36. “This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security objectives of the United States. Australia is one of our most important allies in the Western Pacific,” the DSCA said in a statement. “The strategic location of this political and economic power contributes significantly to ensuring peace and economic stability in the region. It is vital to the U.S. national interest to assist our ally in developing and maintaining a strong …