Arms exports to Turkey at its highest level for 14 years

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Thyssen-Krupp Marine Systems

According to the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the weapons supplied are "goods exclusively for the maritime sector".


(Photo: AP)

Berlin In the first eight months of this year Turkey received war weapons for 250.4 million euros from Germany. This is already the highest annual value since 2005, although four months are still missing. The new export figures emerge from the response of the Ministry of Economy to a request of the deputy left-wing fraction leader Sevim Dagdelen, which is the German Press Agency.

Already last year, deliveries to Turkey amounted to 242.8 million euros, almost a third of all German war weapon exports (770.8 million euros). Turkey was clearly the number one recipient of German armaments. This could be the case again this year despite a partial arms export stop because of the Syria offensive.

According to the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the weapons supplied are "goods exclusively for the maritime sector". It is likely that it is largely material for six Class 214 submarines, which in Turkey under significant participation of the German group ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems are built. The German government had already approved the delivery of components in 2009 and secured the export with a so-called Hermes guarantee amounting to 2.49 billion euros. Meanwhile, such guarantees for war weapons exports to Turkey are no longer granted.

For the first time in three years, there has also been an increase in the number of new export permits issued by the Federal Government for Turkey this year – and a clear one. Until October 9, the federal government gave the green light for armaments deliveries worth 28.5 million euros. This is already more than twice as much as in the whole of 2018 with 12.9 million euros. The number of individual licenses has more than tripled from 58 in the whole of 2018 to 182 in the first nine and a half months of this year. In 2016, armaments had been approved for 84 million euros.

Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas had announced on Saturday that because of the Turkish military offensive in northern Syria against the Kurdish militia YPG, no longer deliveries of armaments were approved to the NATO partners, which could be used in the conflict. Other arms exports will continue to be allowed. Even approved stores are not affected by the delivery stop.

In the last four months of the year, military supplies from Germany should continue to be supplied to the NATO partner. According to figures from the Stockholm Peace Research Institute Sipri, Germany has been one of Turkey's top five arms suppliers to the United States, South Korea, Italy and Spain over the past decade.

Dagdelen called the new numbers an "oath of disclosure" of the Federal Government. They "frighteningly proved Turkey's unscrupulous upgrade," she said. "So all the talk reveals itself of a restrictive arms export policy itself as a big fraud."

More: Foreign Minister Heiko Maas rejects new arms exports to Turkey. Meanwhile, Turkey announces that it will not be stopped.

Arms exports (t) Turkey (t) Germany (t) Arms exports (t) Defense industry (t) Foreign policy with land (t) Nato (t) Ministry of Economic Affairs (t) SIPRI (t) Thyssen-Krupp (t) Sevim Dagdelen (t) Heiko Maas

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