Spain will go ahead with arms deal with Saudi Arabia

(AFP)
Updated 13 September 2018
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Spain will go ahead with arms deal with Saudi Arabia

MADRID: Spain will go ahead with the sale of 400 laser-guided bombs to Saudi Arabia, Foreign Minister Josep Borrell said on Thursday.
“The decision is that these bombs will be delivered to honor a contract that comes from 2015, and was made by the previous government,” Borrell told Onda Cero radio.
Several government ministries had worked on the issue for a week and the contract was reviewed three times by a commission that authorizes arms sales, Borrell said, adding, “We found no reason not to carry it out.”
Borrell said the laser-guided bombs hit their targets with “extraordinary precision” of within one meter. “This kind of weapon does not produce the same sort of bombing as less sophisticated weapons, launched a bit randomly.”
The defense ministry said last month that the current Socialist government, which took power in June, had never sold arms that could be used against a civilian population and would review the criteria used to authorize arms sales.


Germany, Saudi Arabia agree to turn page after diplomatic row

We should have been clearer in our communication and engagement, said Maas. (AFP)
Updated 9 min 57 sec ago
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Germany, Saudi Arabia agree to turn page after diplomatic row

  • The Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs, Adel Al-Jubeir, extended an invitation to his German counterpart, Heiko Maas, to visit the Kingdom at the earliest opportunity
  • We aim for close cooperation between our two countries and to this end seek to intensify our dialogue on a broad range of topics: Maas

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia on Tuesday welcomed a statement by the German foreign minister pledging his intention to work toward strengthening ties and enhancing cooperation between the two countries. 

Riyadh said the relationship between Saudi Arabia and Germany was a “historic and important” one, and the countries played a leading role in bolstering international security and stability, and the global economy. 

The Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs, Adel Al-Jubeir, extended an invitation to his German counterpart, Heiko Maas, to visit the Kingdom at the earliest opportunity, “so that both countries may begin a new phase of close cooperation in all areas to the benefit of both our countries and peoples.”

Earlier, the German foreign minister said relations had “witnessed misunderstandings” in recent months “which stand in sharp contrast to our otherwise strong and strategic ties. We sincerely regret this.”

The minister said: “We should have been clearer in our communications and engagement in order to avoid such misunderstandings.

“We aim for close cooperation between our two countries and to this end seek to intensify our dialogue on a broad range of topics.

“Saudi Arabia plays an immensely important role for peace and stability in the region and the world. As there is a broad range of bilateral and international issues to discuss, we will do our best to make this partnership with the Kingdom even stronger than before.

“Considering our role in Europe and the world, improving our ties with Saudi Arabia will serve the interest of both nations and peoples.”