08.09. 2010 Arms Exports: after Lisbon, EU needs better coordination of its arms exports.

Tunne Kelam MEP and Arturs Krišjānis Kariņš MEP

Today's European Parliament debate on arms exports, initiated by EPP Group Members, was based on solid concerns of several Member States who have been seriously worried about the imminent exports of modern military technology from some Member States to third countries.

"The EU has to develop a working common security and defence strategy", Arturs Krišjānis Kariņš MEP said. "Currently, a Member State can seriously compromise the security interests of other Member States. France's proposed sale of Mistral class ships to Russia shows how much we are lacking in common policy", said Kariņš.

Estonian MEP Tunne Kelam saw the debate as an opportunity not only to voice the concerns of particular Member States but to prepare for the practical implementation of the Lisbon Treaty, including better coordination of the Common Foreign and Security Policy.

"It is good to hear that France has decided after all to sell Mistral helicopter carriers to Russia without modern military technology", Kelam said. "However, there remains the need to consult better and in time in the Council with other Member States before any arms sales decision is decided. We need to trust each other more, share our mutual plans and also concerns", concluded the Estonian MEP.