The exports are said to have been approved despite an agreement not to sell arms to countries “directly” involved in the Yemen war. The deal was forged during the formation of the coalition between Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative bloc and the Social Democrats in March after months of political wrangling. It was not made clear which countries were meant by the phrase “directly”.
„Basically, the sale of small arms has been increased. Its main buyers are Asian, African and Middle Eastern countries.“
The Azerbaijan International Defense Exhibition „ADEX – 2018“ will be held in Baku on September 25-27.
While this was at the time supposed to be a condition of the Social Democrats joining the government. So far, Merkel has not explained why the sale was approved over the putative ban, and the Social Democrats have not complained either.
The New York-based organization made the plea in a Thursday statement concerning sales of attack helicopters and 3,000 bomb bodies worth around $1 billion in total.
“These two weapons sales make clear that the Trump administration intends nothing short of a free pass on human rights for Bahrain,” said the HRW’s Washington director, Sarah Margon.
In 2017’s military spending bill, the Pentagon was given increased authority to directly write up arms exports abroad as “domestic” sales contracts with an export component to them. This was intended to allow the Pentagon to rush certain deliveries.
France, the world’s third-biggest arms exporter, counts Saudi Arabia and the UAE among its major purchasers, and France’s biggest defense firms, including Dassault and Thales, have major contracts in the Persian Gulf.
The European country has sold Caesar artillery guns and ammunition, sniper rifles and armored vehicles to Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
Human rights campaigners have begun an attempt to overturn a high court judgment that allows the British government to continue to export arms to Saudi Arabia for use in Yemen.