Weapon descriptions u8sed by our government are all wrong.
I COULD not believe my eyes when I read the following on BBC text news (July 13) "Arms sales to authoritarian regimes should be reviewed to ensure equipment was not used to repress citizens, MPs have urged. They also strongly rebuked ministers for classifying equipment such as sniper rifles and armoured fighting vehicles as crowd control goods".
How are civil servants able to use such language to promote the sales of military equipment, without fear of reprimand, or worse? Is it a case of "anything goes" so long as we can increase our sales? Are these people not in breach of some national, or international, law or treaty?
Government policy states that decisions to refuse arms export licences can be taken if there is a "clear risk that the proposed export might provoke or prolong regional or internal conflicts or which might be used to facilitate internal repression".
Is it now the case that this policy is being ignored because of the recession? We cannot adhere to such policies in the present circumstances. A blind eye is being turned to such contravention of policy.
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I find this absolutely appalling. It does great damage to the Government's credibility and status, both at home and abroad. It is a propaganda coup for these terrorists who threaten this country. They can use it to cry: "Look, we told you so! Britain is selling arms to repress your kin in other countries, to suppress their freedom of expression." What great material for recruiting new, young, gullible men and women to "the cause"! When is the next misguided Bristol bomber to be discovered?