Germany has rejected more requests for arms exports to Turkey during the past 5 months than in five years between 2010 and 2015, German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on Tuesday.
The sharp increase in rejections, mainly handguns, ammunition and parts needed in weapons production, is due to “the risk of a deployment in the context of internal repression or the Kurdish conflict,” according to a written response by State Secretary Matthias Machnig to a question posed by lawmaker Jan van Aken.
“Respect for human rights is a matter of particular importance for arms export decisions,” the answer from Machnig of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy also outlined.
“This is a first step,” van Aken told Sueddeutsche Zeitung, “And the next must be that Turkey does not get any weapons from Germany,” the Left Party (Die Linke) law maker said, adding that the Turkish government is waging a war both within its own borders and in Syria while fast becoming a dictatorship.
Relations between Germany and Turkey are strained. Turkey’s plans to campaign in Germany ahead of the referendum were refused on several occasions and Turkish politicians, including President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, accused Germany of Nazi measures.