AP NEWS

Merkel: Germany risks been viewed as unreliable on arms

March 21, 2019
German Chancellor Angela Merkel delivers a speech about the Brexit ahead of a meeting of the European council, at the German parliament Bundestag in Berlin, Thursday, March 21, 2019. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned that her country risks being viewed as an unreliable partner in joint European defense industry projects.

Merkel’s comments Thursday came amid tensions with France and Britain over Berlin’s ban on arms sales to Saudi Arabia. Paris and London say it prevents them selling jointly developed equipment with German components to the country.

Merkel said joint European projects require “reliability between partners.” She said other countries sometimes have different perspectives and Germany needs to discuss the matter, “otherwise we will be viewed as morally arrogant ... or we will be viewed as incapable of compromise.” She added there’s no use “paying lip-service to a great Europe and how we all want to work together.”

The chancellor’s coalition partners favor a very restrictive line on arms exports.