Middle East dictatorships armed by H&K

Mohammed Hussein Tantawi with guard wielding H&K machine pistol

The head of Egypt's armed forces (l) on Cairo's Tahrir Square with bodyguard wielding a H&K machine pistol

Across the Middle East and North Africa, people have risen up to try to overthrow their undemocratic governments, and these uprisings have been met with state-sponsored violence and repression.

Now Notts Anti-Militarism can reveal that several of these repressive regimes have been armed by a company with an international sales office in Nottingham: Heckler & Koch.

In Libya, forces loyal to 42-year dictator Muammar Gaddafi have been slaughtering civilian protesters in the streets. According to Jane’s Infantry Weapons, Libya’s armed forces are still equipped with Heckler & Koch G3 rifles.

They bought these rifles from the Greek state manufacturer, which was in turn licensed by Heckler & Koch. The company has used this type of deal many times in order to profit from arms exports that would not be allowed in its home country.

The regime in Bahrain has also been shooting pro-democracy demonstrators. Bahraini forces are equipped with the more up-to-date MP5 submachine gun. This weapon is also used by the armed forces of  Egypt, Jordan and Morocco, all of which have seen pro-democracy demonstrations recently. Jordanian forces are also armed with Heckler & Koch’s modern G36 assault rifle.

Jordanian special forces training with H&K assault rifles

Jordanian special forces training with H&K assault rifles

And these are only the countries that have seen recent pro-democracy uprisings. Heckler & Koch weapons are used by other repressive regimes in the region, including Lebanon, which teeters on the brink of civil war, Sudan, which has been riven by conflict for decades, and Saudi Arabia, whose autocratic regime is characterised by gross abuses of human rights.

This is just a snapshot of the profile of Heckler & Koch, whose weapons have been sold to undemocratic and repressive regimes around the world, and have killed at least 1.5 million people. If the people of the Middle East can face down the bullets in a once-in-a-lifetime fight for freedom, then the people of Nottingham can rise up and end the company that makes these weapons.

1 comment to Middle East dictatorships armed by H&K

  • Andrew Travis

    I have been compiling evidence of human rights abuses across the UN,US,NATO and AL nations and regions. The current DSEi fair in London at the minute characterises the hypocracy and double standards set by the Allied nations.

    We hope, and predict, that over the next decade, the people’s republic will continue to protest and march againist these superpowers, their arms dealerships and interventions, and will rise up.

    We can only wish for a new age of peace.

    Thank you for your information, I will continue to use your website to help my research into corruption.

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