By: Steve Dellar | 10-22-2018 | News
Photo credit: Der Spiegel

EU Leaders Block Arms Shipments To Saudi Arabia Over Khashoggi Death, Isolating USA

Germany and Belgium have announced that any sale of arms to Saudi Arabia cannot take place under the current circumstances until the death of Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi is cleared up. France and the UK are said to be considering a similar move.

With a strategy clearly designed to isolate the US Presidency of Donald Trump, Ms Merkel made the statement only a few hours after Germany, the UK, and France issued a joint statement in which they said there is an "urgent need for clarification of exactly what happened" adding that "hypotheses" proposed by the Saudi investigation have to be backed up with facts.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">German Chancellor Angela Merkel says she backs a freeze on arms exports to Saudi Arabia following the killing of writer Jamal Khashoggi. <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; The Associated Press (@AP) <a href="">October 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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After a leadership meeting at the CDU headquarters in Berlin, Ms Merkel stated: “First, we condemn this act in the strongest terms.”

“Second, there is an urgent need to clarify what happened - we are far from this having been cleared up and those responsible held to account … As far as arms exports are concerned, those can’t take place in the current circumstances.”

Related coverage: <a href="">18 Saudis Detained in Khashoggi Investigation</a>.

Germany is in the top four of arms supplies to Saudi Arabia, together with the US, France and the UK. Belgium is in the top ten. In 2017, Germany approved arms exports worth some 500 million euro, a number that pales in comparison to the 140 billion dollar worth of arms shipments the White House of US President Donald Trump was able to get signed off.

More and more governments worldwide are demanding answers from the Saudi crown prince whilst many organizations have already dropped out of the upcoming high-profile Future Investment Initiative set to take place in Riyadh this month.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Germany won&#39;t export arms to Saudi &#39;in current situation&#39;: Merkel <a href=""></a> <a href=""></a></p>&mdash; FRANCE 24 (@FRANCE24) <a href="">October 21, 2018</a></blockquote>

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US President Donald Trump however seems unlikely to make a statement similar to Chancellor Merkel's, as he hopes the US can continue with its massive arms deal with Saudi Arabia, stating that there are other ways to "punish" the country if it was behind the journalist's death.

At a defense roundtable in Arizona on Friday, POTUS stated “I’d rather keep the million jobs, and I’d find another solution.”


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1 Comment/s
Anonymous No. 40095 2018-10-22 : 17:07

Not very surprising. Anything Merkel can do to make Trump look bad ….

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