Tag Archives: arms export

Germany: The human chain against arms exports outside the Bundestag | News | DW | Instant News

Peace protesters gathered in Berlin’s government district on Saturday as part of a national demonstration calling for disarmament.

Holding ribbons to help maintain social distancing, hundreds of people formed a human chain that stretched from Chancellor Angela Merkel’s office to the Bundestag, which houses the lower house of parliament.

Berlin police said 350 people took part in the protests in the German capital, while organizers said 500 people were there.

Smaller demonstrations were held in other German cities, including Bonn and Munich.

“Stop the bomb business” read a banner at the protests – which stretched from the Bundestag to chancellor Merkel

The military spending sparked outrage

The protests, held under the slogan “Peace, not arms,” ​​came in the middle debate about military spending in Germany.

On Tuesday, German lawmakers will discuss the country’s budget proposals for 2021, which will see a huge spike in defense spending.

Reiner Hoffmann, head of the German Confederation of Trade Unions (DGB) said his association was demonstrating “against the global arms frenzy” and NATO spending targets.

“We have to break the downward spiral of weapon formation. Armament and violence do not solve any of the problems,” Hoffmann said.

Make peace without weapons, read one of the protesters' sign at a demonstration outside the Bundestag in Berlin, Germany

“Make peace without weapons,” read one sign of the protester

US President Donald Trump and outgoing NATO have pushed Germany to increase its defense spending – which currently falls below the 2% target the military alliance has set for its members.

Trump has often taken issue with Germany’s military spending, announcing this summer that Washington plans to attract thousands of US troops from a military base in Germany.

US lawmakers took steps to block the plan in the defense spending bill finalized this week.

rs / rc (dpa, AP)


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Germany exports millions of weapons to the Libyan civil war, despite an embargo | News | DW | Instant News

Since hosting the Libyan summit four months ago, the German government has agreed to export arms worth € 331 million ($ 358 million) to countries accused of supporting warring parties in the country, according to a report from the German Ministry of Economy seen by DPA news agency.

Between January 20 and May 3, Germany agreed to € 308.2 million of weapons aimed at Egypt alone, the ministry said. This information was provided in response to a request from the German left party Linke.

The German government also approved € 15.1 million in arms exports for Turkey and € 7.7 million for the United Arab Emirates (UAE), DPA reported.

Turkey supports the Government of the National Agreement (GNA), which is supported by the United Nations, while Russia, Egypt and the UAE support a rival force led by Khalifa HList.

Read more: The repressive proto-state of Khalifa HList and the ‘myth’ of stability

An embargo on ice?

Libya has been ravaged by war since the overthrow of Libyan dictator Muammar al-Gaddafi in the West in 2011. Many groups continue to struggle for power in the oil-rich nation, often with support from foreign powers.

In January, Germany hosted a summit of world leaders whose countries had sent weapons or troops to Libya.

In the closing declaration, 16 countries and international organizations agreed to an arms embargo for Libya.

Read more: The UN welcomed the Libyan peace commitment from the Berlin Summit

In-depth frustration from the UN

Egypt, Turkey, Russia and the UAE were among the signatories. Secretary General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres later accused the four countries of violating the embargo and continuing to provide weapons for the conflict.

“I am very frustrated with what happened in Libya,” Guterres said at a February press conference. “They are committed not to interfere in the Libyan process and they are committed not to send weapons or participate in any way in combat. The truth is that the Security Council (arms) embargo remains violated.”

Conflict has escalated since April last year, when HList troops seized Tripoli from the GNA.

Violence has continued in recent weeks despite international demand for a ceasefire in connection with a coronavirus outbreak.

Read more: Germany threatens ‘consequences’ for Libyan arms sales


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