Swiss freeze arms exports to UAE, probe Syria link
Source: BI-ME with Reuters , Author: Posted by BI-ME staff
Posted: Thu July 5, 2012 5:10 pm

INTERNATIONAL. Switzerland said it was freezing arms exports to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) after a media report said a Swiss-made hand grenade originally shipped to the Gulf state had been found in Syria.

The government took the decision after a Swiss newspaper published a picture of a hand grenade produced by Swiss weapons manufacturer RUAG which it said had been taken in the Syrian town of Marea last month, despite the fact that Switzerland stopped arms exports to Syria in 1998.

The photograph raised concerns about the final destination of Switzerland's arms exports.

Initial findings suggested the grenade had been part of a RUAG shipment of 225,162 grenades sent to the UAE in 2003, the Swiss government said.

The Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) is therefore tentatively freezing all pending applications for arms exports to the UAE and demanding the return of licenses which have already been issued but not yet used, the Swiss government said in a statement.

The UAE government has not commented on the matter yet.

The Swiss government said it will make further inquiries because the circumstances in the case remain unclear.

"At present, there is no evidence that Swiss hand grenades have found their way to Syria. Inquiries are ongoing however," the government said.

 

MIDDLE EAST BUSINESS COMMENT & ANALYSIS

date:Posted: August 29, 2014
KUEAIT. There is plenty of potential in the Kuwaiti market, should investor interest remain and the government carries out its proposed spending plans. The government's 2014/15 budget is expansionary, with expenditure growth of 3.2% to US$77.3 billion.
date:Posted: August 28, 2014
SAUDI ARABIA. The Saudi Arabian index is the region's most diverse capital market due to its size and maturity; Jadwa Investment views the opening up of the Tadawul as an overall positive but believes a cautious and considered path to reform is the best way forward, much like the Chinese example.
date:Posted: August 28, 2014
LEBANON. The results of the Byblos Bank/AUB Consumer Confidence Index show a marginal improvement in January and February, picking up pace in March and April, and regressing in May and June 2014.
KUEAIT. There is plenty of potential in the Kuwaiti market, should investor interest remain and the government carries out its proposed spending plans. The government's 2014/15 budget is expansionary, with expenditure growth of 3.2% to US$77.3 billion.
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