In 2018, arms deliveries to Turkey represented, with 242.8 million euros, almost a third of German exports of weapons of war.
After the Netherlands, Germany has decided to stop the delivery to Turkey of arms "That could be used in northeastern Syria" against the Kurds, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas announced in the daily newspaper Bild published Sunday, October 13th.
"In the context of the Turkish military offensive in northeastern Syria, the government will not issue any new (sales) licenses for all military equipment that could be used in Syria by Turkey"said the head of German diplomacy, without specifying the type of weapons involved, nor the amount.
First customer in NATO
The decision is not only symbolic: in 2018, arms deliveries to Turkey accounted, with 242.8 million euros, for almost a third of German exports of weapons of war (770.8 million euros). In the first four months of 2019, sales to Turkey totaled 184.1 million euros. Turkey is thus the first customer of German armaments in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
Like many European countries, Germany has strongly condemned the Turkish offensive against Kurds in Syria, which it believes could "Further destabilize the region and cause a resurgence" of the Islamic State group.
Already, in October 2018, Berlin had distinguished itself by embarking on arms sales to Saudi Arabia after the assassination of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The embargo was extended on 18 September by six months.