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German arms sales to Turkey declined by $10.6 million in 2020

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Figures provided by the German Ministry of Economy have revealed that arms sales to Turkey decreased by €8.7 million ($10.6 million) in 2020 compared to the sales of the previous year, Deutsche Welle Turkish reported on Tuesday.

A statement from the German government indicated a decreasing number of arms sales to Turkey in 2020 following a parliamentary question by Sevim Dağdelen, a member of the German parliament from the Left Party.

According to official data for the period ending Dec. 10, the German government had approved €31.6 million ($38.5 million) in arms sales to Turkey in 2019, but the figure had declined to to €22.9 million ($27.9 million) in 2020.

The German government had decided to limit arms sales to Turkey due to Ankara’s massive crackdown on dissidents following a 2016 coup attempt that worsened the state of democracy and human rights in the country.

Germany’s approved arms and military equipment sales to Turkey, which amounted to nearly €84 million ($102.3 million) in 2016, declined to €34 million ($41.4 million) in 2017 and stood at €12.9 million ($15.7 million) in 2018.

Commenting on statements from German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas about further arms deliveries to Turkey, DW quoted Dağdelen as saying that Maas was relying on “cynical geopolitics that do not care about the victims of Turkish aggression.”

“The announced delivery of German submarines to Turkey supports Erdogan’s threats against EU members Greece and Cyprus. Anyone who speaks of European solidarity but continues to deliver offensive weapons to Turkey, with which Ankara then threatens EU members, is trying to deceive the public. The statements by Heiko Maas represent another low point with regard to a peaceful German foreign policy,” she added.

Maas on Tuesday told the German news agency DPA that he finds the arms embargo on Turkey “strategically incorrect,” rejecting Greece’s call for European leaders to apply more pressure on Turkey over its actions in disputed waters in the eastern Mediterranean.

In recent weeks, Greece called on Germany to halt delivery of six Type 214 submarines ordered by Ankara in 2009. Beginning in 2022, one submarine will join the Turkish naval forces each year until 2027. The purchase of the nearly undetectable vessels could tilt the maritime military advantage in Turkey’s favor.

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