No weapons supplies to Iraq - Open borders to refugees

Press Statement by the spokesperson of the campaign Action outcry - Stop the arms trade!

The campaign "Action outcry - Stop the arms trade" criticized the decision made by the Federal Government, to upgrade the weapons of Kurdish fighters in northern Iraq with German war weapons. The campaign spokesmen Jürgen Grässlin and Paul Russmann spoke emphatically of "the disastrous consequences of the pending arms transfers".

"German arms supplies to the Kurdish peshmerga are false and fatal in their effect. Whoever supplies weapons to a war party, is adding fuel to the fire of war" said Jürgen Grässlin, national spokesman of the German Peace Society - United War Resisters (DFG-VK) and for the campaign 'Action outcry - Stop the arms trade"!

"Once again, Germany has exported more war weapons and military equipment to the powder keg Middle East, a region where there is a lack of many things, but not weapons," says Paul Russmann, CEO of Living Without Armaments (ORL) and spokesperson for the campaign "Action outcry - stop the arms trade". "The weapons exports will be destablising in the medium and long term, thus irresponsible and counter-productive in the end. Germany has to finally define, at all levels, their responsibility as a world power for peace. This requires the federal government to multiply humanitarian services and reception of refugees. "

The spokesman for the campaign "Action outcry - Stop the arms trade" make the following arguments against the war weapons and supplies and for emergency humanitarian aid to the suffering people in Iraq:

1 The decision of the Federal Government on 20 August 2014, to upgrade the Kurdish fighters in northern Iraq with German weapons turns Germany into a war party.

2 The export of arms and military equipment to Iraq is against the spirit of the international arms embargo, the Arms Control Law, the Foreign Trade Law and the "Political Principles of the Federal Government for arms exports".

3 Delivering German war weapons and military equipment to the peshmerga as non-governmental recipients of German war weapons sets a precedent that can serve as a further door opener for future arms transfers.

4 The announcement of the Federal Government to restrict arms exports in future, is undermined delivering arms to Iraq. The decades-long tradition of German war weapons deliveries in the conflict affected areas of the Middle East continues unchecked. With these arms exports oil is poured into the fire of war and the arms race in the region is fueled again.

5 There are more than enough weapons in the powder keg that is the Middle East, and at the same time there is a lack of state structures, of education and health. Stability in the region is ensured only when all political and religious forces are adequately represented in the Iraqi government and use their influence in the public interest asserted. Sunni MPs and ministers in the new Iraqi government can exert a positive influence on the IS.

6 People are being killed now. Deliveries of weapons that are supposed to protect them now ostensibly reach their destination - if at all - only in days, weeks or months. The military on the ground must then be trained on the arms. Arms sales are the worse of all bad means to protect people from violence and murder. On the contrary, the large number of available weapons leads to renewed human rights violations.

7 The final destination of the weapons deliveries for the intended recipients cannot be guaranteed in the slightest. Delivered weapons are not brought back. Experience shows: who is today considered a "good" can become "evil" tomorrow - or vice versa.

8 The events of past and present conflicts show that exported weapons are destabilizing for decades during the following military operations, thus irresponsible and counter-productive in the end. But it is realistic that the Kurds upgraded now with modern weapons want to have their own state in northern Iraq. Coming conflicts with Turkey are inevitable, even with the use of German weapons on both sides of the front.

9 The federal government must massively exert pressure on the friendly countries Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar at the political level so that their support and funding of the IS-terror units is stopped immediately.

10 The federal government needs to show support in the United Nations for a comprehensive ban of nuclear, biological, chemical and conventional weapons (ABC / K arms embargo) for the entire Middle East.

11 To save lives, the federal government must supply as an emergency measure comprehensive humanitarian aid for the persecuted on site, open wide the borders to refugees from Iraq and Syria and fly people at risk with transport planes to safe areas - even to Germany.

For more information on the campaign go to: http://www.aufschrei-waffenhandel.de