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Baerbock Joins Brits in Push for Fighter Jet Sales to Saudis

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has just broken another taboo of Green party policies: During a visit to Israel she endorsed lifting the German government’s ban on weapons deliveries to Saudi Arabia—so far supported also by the Greens on grounds that severe human rights violations exclude such deliveries to Riyadh.

Baerbock said that the German government is open to the delivery of Eurofighter fighter jets to Saudi Arabia. By intercepting missiles fired at Israel by the Yemeni Houthi rebels, Saudi Arabia is contributing to Israel’s security and preventing a conflagration in the region, she said after talks with Israel’s President Isaac Herzog and the new Foreign Minister Israel Katz. “For this very reason, we do not see the German government opposing the British plans for further Eurofighters for Saudi Arabia.”

This Baerbock initiative, her clear submission to British geopolitics, however, will not go well with the Green party base. Indicative is the protest voiced by the Green Party Co-Chair Ricarda Lang, who said on RBB24 Inforadio on Jan. 8: “In view of the human rights situation, including Saudi Arabia’s internal constitution, I still think a delivery of Eurofighters is wrong. I think it would be right for us to stick to the position that no Eurofighters will be delivered to Saudi Arabia.”