Germany is encouraging other EU member states to follow its example as long as uncertainty remains over the killing of the Saudi journalist.
Germany has stopped arms exports to Saudi Arabia following the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the hands of the Saudi regime.
According to Middle East Monitor, Germany is encouraging other EU member states to follow its example as long as uncertainty remains over the killing of the journalist.
Riyadh has given conflicting accounts of what happened to the journalist after he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2nd. Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir said the killing was a “huge and grave mistake” but sought to shield Saudi Arabia’s crown prince in the process.
Chancellor Angela Merkel stepped in yesterday and said that Germany would stop arms exports to Saudi Arabia as long as the uncertainty around Khashoggi’s death persisted.
German politician Peter Altmaier said Riyadh’s explanations on the case so far are unacceptable.
“The government is in agreement that we will not approve further arms exports for the moment because we want to know what happened,” Altmaier told ZDF in Germany.
The German government is a big spender on weapons exports to Saudi Arabia, last year they spent US$462 million, making it the second-largest recipient of German arms after Algeria.
Altmaier said a decision will soon be made on previous arms deals with the kingdom and other EU states should stop arms exports to Saudi Arabia in order to increase pressure on Riyadh over the Khashoggi case.
“For me it would be important that we come to a joint European stance,” Altmaier said.
“Because only if all European countries are in agreement, it will make an impression on the government in Riyadh. It will not have any positive consequences if we halt arms exports but other countries at the same time fill the gap.”
Last week,, we revealed that despite the furore surrounding the murder of Khashoggi, Saudi Arabia followed through with its pledge of providing the United States of America with US$100 million to help stabilise areas in Syria liberated from the Islamic State.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo landed in Riyadh on the same day as the funds arrived in the US to discuss the fate of the missing Saudi journalist, which sent shockwaves through the political community over the timing of the transaction.