January 25, 2021

The German Minister of Economy calls for a "European position" in the sale of arms to the Saudis

The German Minister of Economy calls for a "European position" in the sale of arms to the Saudis



The German Economy Minister, Peter Altmaier, today called for a "European position" in relation to arms sales to Saudi Arabia, whose suspension announced Berlin and requested that other countries do not fill that "vacuum".

"It would be important for me to be able to reach a European position, which I share with Foreign Minister Heiko Maas," the minister told German public television "ZDF".

"And it is only if all European Foreign Ministers agree, then that impresses the Government in Riyadh," Altmaier said.

"It certainly does not have any consequences from the positive point of view if we, which is what we are doing, do not continue at the moment with our arms exports, but at the same time other countries fill that gap," he said.

The minister's statements are known the day after German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced the suspension of the sale of arms from his country to Saudi Arabia.

"With regard to arms exports, these can not take place at the moment we are," Merkel said Sunday in Berlin after a meeting with officials from his party, the Christian Democratic Union (CDU).

Merkel had previously reiterated the condemnation of the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi that he had previously expressed in a joint statement with the foreign minister.

The chancellor also stressed that the explanations given so far by Riyadh about the death of Khashoggi are not enough and said that the German government will try to coordinate with its partners to take a common position before the Saudi Government.

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