Foreign Affairs committee plays into arms industry’s hands
GUE/NGL MEP Sabine Lösing's own initiative report* on arms exports was today ruined by right-wing MEPs in a Foreign Affairs committee vote. After rejecting a joint compromise from Socialists, Greens and Liberals and voting in favour of their own amendments, the Conservative majority then went on to reject the report as a whole.
With a full presence at yesterday's vote from all MEPs from the other groups, the report could have had a majority, the same goes for plenary.
“The conservatives' actions clearly show that for them the interests of the arms industry prevail over human rights,” commented Sabine Lösing. “As the report has been thrown out it will no longer be discussed in plenary. This suits right-wing MEPs who want to prevent any public discussion of effective controls of arms exports in order to block potential stricter enforcement rules coming into force.”
In 2008, EU Member States adopted criteria for arms trade exports, including bans on exporting arms to crisis regions and countries that grossly violate human rights. However, these were not strictly applied by the Member States, allowing Germany to export arms to Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The aim of Sabine Lösing's report was to see these criteria implemented efficiently and uniformly.
*Arms export: implementation of Council Common Position 2008/944/CFSP
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