Keep up with the news by installing RT’s extension for . Never miss a story with this clean and simple app that delivers the latest headlines to you.


‘We reject illegal killings’: Germany suspends drone purchase

Published time: November 15, 2013 10:33
Edited time: November 19, 2013 10:21
AFP Photo/Armin Weigel/Germany Out

AFP Photo/Armin Weigel/Germany Out

Berlin has suspended the purchase of armed drones on the grounds that it “categorically rejects illegal killings.” This follows a report by Amnesty International that accused Merkel’s government of aiding the US with drone strikes in Pakistan.

A draft agreement between the Social Democrats and the Conservatives obtained by Der Spiegel condemns the use of drones for targeted attacks.

"We categorically reject illegal killings by drones. Germany will support the use of unmanned weapons systems for the purposes of international disarmament and arms control," said the statement. The government says that before acquiring the remote-controlled craft, it must thoroughly examine “all associated civil and constitutional guidelines and ethical questions.”

In spite of significant opposition in Germany – 59 per cent of the population according to a Pew Research poll in 2012 – outgoing German defense minister, Thomas de Maziere, spent hundreds of millions of euros on drones that were not permitted to fly in German airspace.

“We cannot keep the stagecoach while others are developing the railway,” declared Maziere, who announced to the German public in May that talks were underway to discuss the purchase of US Predator drones and Israeli Heron drones.

However, with the formation of a new government in Germany following Chancellor Merkel’s reelection in September, the German policy on drones looks set to change. Both the Social Democrats and the Christian Socialist Union parties voiced their opposition to the deal, writes the Local.

The German government is “allowing all these operations and all these drone attacks by allowing the US military bases in Germany,” German MP Sevim Dagdelen told RT in an interview. “That’s why I cannot really say that they are rejecting” the use of drones for illegal killings.

Dagdelen said that some German politicians have changed their tune on drones after saying before recent elections that they would not support their use.

“It’s a hard slap to the face of freedom-loving and peace-loving people in Germany, because before the elections, the Social Democrats said they were not for the use of combat drones, that they are against it,” she said. “Now they are saying in the new government with the conservatives, they are okay for buying new combat drones.”

'License to kill' 

Although the German government has criticized Washington’s use of the remote-controlled craft to carry out strikes, Amnesty International has accused Berlin of complicity in some attacks. In a report published by the organization in October, Amnesty said it had data from Pakistani officials that Germany handed over key information on drone targets.

“Secret services in Germany and in other European states have worked together with the USA and its drone program in Pakistan,” said the report.

Amnesty has rejected Washington’s arguments that their targeted killings save lives and prevent terrorism, slamming them as “a license to kill.”

As part of the report on drone attacks, Amnesty investigated 45 targeted killing that took place between January 2012 and August 2013 in the tribal region of North Waziristan along the Pakistani border with Afghanistan.

Amnesty’s Pakistan expert, Mustafa Qadri said: “We are publishing this report to push governments, including Germany’s, to reveal its role in the US drone program.The German government must finally openly demand that the USA adheres to prevailing legal norms. German authorities cannot continue to support the USA’s illegal drone attacks.”

The government of Pakistan claims that drone attacks have claimed up to 900 civilian lives in the country and condemn them as a violation of sovereignty and human rights.

Dagdelen said an alternative to combat drone use is for powers like the US to reverse their support of militants when it’s convenient.

“It’s always an option to stop killing and murdering people,” she said. “For me and many other people, it would be most important to stop supporting militant Islamists as the US did in the past. For example, in Afghanistan, or nowadays in Egypt or in Syria.”

Comments (50)


Regula 30.01.2014 13:53

There wouldn't be a fraction of the war and violence in the world if the US stopped instigating jihadis to overthrow governments, fight civil wars etc. Terrorism wasn't a problem before the Bush admin. started its ill-begotten wars on Afghanistan and Pakistan and the Obama admin has made the use of terrorists as proxy force to overthrow governments into a policy. The real problem with terrorism is in the US policy - that is where it has to be stopped.


Norberto Triemstra 28.11.2013 03:01

Certainly, it violates the two main principles granting international peace: 1- sovereignty; and 2- jurisdiction.

There is absolutely no right to operate in other nations space without authorization of a legal government, much less to execute killings with absolute no accountability just the word of people proven to be lying and wordless so many times....


sandra 18.11.2013 07:27

I guess Merkle does not want to say what Obummer said. "I'm good at killing people".
Wh at a great guy, and you said it like you were proud of each kill that was done under your non military experience. You kill like a pro Obummer. But when do you go to jail? You know your no good and so do the people of the world. You are rotten to the core. You need to be exposed more and more so there is not a shred of doubt that you are promise and break promises and could care less about anyone. We see right through you Obummer and the rest of your cronies that follow you Judas. No statute of limitations on murder. For everyone!

View all comments (50)
Add comment

Authorization required for adding comments

Register or



Show password


or Register

Request a new password


or Register

To complete a registration check
your Email:


or Register

A password has been sent to your email address

Edit profile



New password

Retype new password

Current password



Follow us

Follow us