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04.07.2013

Arms exports

European Parliament fails to pressure Council for stricter control of arms exports

The European Parliament today voted on a resolution on the European Council's Common Position on arms exports. The conservatives and liberals' proposal achieved a majority. Green MEP Tarja Cronberg, Greens/EFA spokesperson for security and defence stated:

"We are extremely disappointed with the resolution tabled by the conservatives and liberals as it does nothing to improve the EU's arms exports regime. Sadly, there is a big divide in the European Parliament between MEPs that prioritise defending human rights and MEPs that are concerned with the interests of the military industry.

"The adoption of this very conservative resolution means that the European Parliament has totally failed to put pressure on the Council to introduce further transparency and anti-corruption measures or ensure stringent respect for human rights regarding its arms exports.

"The resolution is shamefully weak on human rights. The principle of respecting human rights when deciding on where European armaments can be exported has been the key added value of the EU Common Position. Unfortunately the resolution adopted today by the conservative-liberal majority is even less progressive than the position of many of our Member States which are currently trying to improve the Common Position.

"I regret that the liberals did not support the much more progressive resolution tabled by the Greens and socialists. Until recently, the liberals had shown understanding of our concerns on the EU’s arms exports and their sudden alliance with the conservatives has been very detrimental."