Israeli parliamentarian Tamar Zandberg yesterday urged Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “to reveal if meetings held during Chadian President Idriss Déby’s visit to Israel will include negotiations on Israeli arms sales to the African country”, reported the Times of Israel.
“The concern is that the visit will also be used for secret arms deals in which Israeli arms will be sold to persecute political opponents, human rights activists and journalists,” the opposition politician and Meretz party leader said.
In a report on Déby’s visit, Reuters cited Chad government sources who said that the meetings “focused on security”, and “that Israel has supplied the Chadian army with weaponry and other equipment this year to help in its fight against the country’s northern rebels”.
“When there is a choice between the liberal democracies and the world’s most dubious leaders, Netanyahu always chooses the dubious. Netanyahu’s foreign policy continues to tarnish Israel’s reputation around the world,” Zandberg said.
The Times of Israel noted that “for decades, Israel has been accused of selling weapons and military services to human rights violators around the world, including to apartheid South Africa, Rwanda during the 1994 genocide and in recent years to South Sudan, despite a near-universal arms embargo over the bloody civil war there.”
Most recently, the report continued, “Israel has been accused of supplying Myanmar with ‘advanced weapons’ during the country’s ethnic cleansing campaign against its Rohingya Muslims.”
According to the Times of Israel, “the extent of Israeli arms sales has been largely unknown as those transactions have largely remained sealed — due to national security concerns, the government maintains — despite attempts by activists to have them released to the public”.