Official speeches and statements - October 26, 2018
1. Saudi Arabia - Arms sales - Reply by Mme Florence Parly, Minister for the Armed Forces, to a question in the National Assembly (Paris,2018-10-24)
Let’s not mix everything up.
Firstly, there’s the murder of Jamal Khashoggi. It’s a murder. This murder was committed against a journalist. So it’s also an appalling attack on press freedom. It’s extremely serious. It’s why we, France, are calling for full light to be shed [on the circumstances], for a credible investigation to be carried out and for those responsible to be clearly identified. And it’s on the basis of this investigation’s conclusions that we shall draw our own conclusions and that decisions will be taken.
You mentioned a second issue: the situation in Yemen. That country is being ravaged by civil war and terrorism. It’s civilians who are paying the highest price. The conflict has lasted too long, and believe me, the government is fully conscious of this. That’s why it’s taking action to seek, with the countries concerned, a political solution to this humanitarian tragedy.
Finally, regarding arms exports, I’d like to dispel a myth. No, we don’t sell arms the way we sell baguettes. The rule is clear: all arms sales are banned without express authorization. This express authorization, as you know, ladies and gentlemen deputies, comes about through very rigorous scrutiny, on a case-by-case basis, bringing together several ministries, in order to very precisely assess all the risks. Let’s not mix everything up!./.