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Germany to Continue Tank Export to Saudi Arabia

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TEHRAN, July 9 (ICANA) – The German parliament has defeated a motion by the opposition asking the government to stop the export of 200 combat tanks to Saudi Arabia with the majority of the center-right coalition.
Saturday, July 09, 2011 7:57:31 PM
Germany to Continue Tank Export to Saudi Arabia

On the last day before the summer break the Bundestag saw a heated debate as the opposition spoke of a unique scandal accusing the government of seriously damaging Germany's reputation in the Arab world.

Chancellor Angela Merkel remained silent. Decisions by the Federal Security Council were secret for a good reason, it was all she said. Her foreign minister Guido Westerwelle acknowledged that while human rights were not negotiable the government needed to take security concerns of its allies seriously.

Experts believe that with the Arab world events Germany, Israel and the US want to strengthen Saudi Arabia as a superpower in the ME.

Arms sales to repressive countries clearly violate Germany's laws on weapons exports. And according to a latest poll 94 percent of Germans oppose such a deal.

Saudi Arabia's interest in the Leopard 2-tank dates back to the 1980s. All previous governments had denied exports due to what they called human rights violations in the kingdom.

Parliament might now be taking its summer break, but the discussion about the alleged arms deal with Saudi Arabia continues. The opposition is already preparing to file a complaint of unconstitutionality while the government maintains its silence.

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