France Bans Israeli Firms From Europe’s Biggest Defense Show

Europe’s Biggest Defense Show

France has banned Israeli firms from participating in Eurosatory, Europe’s largest defense show, a little over two weeks before the event kicks off in Paris, with the government citing Israel’s military actions in Gaza.

“At the request of the French authorities, Israeli companies will not be present at Eurosatory,” the French Armed Forces Ministry said in an emailed statement on Friday. “Conditions are no longer suited to welcome Israeli companies to the French show, in a context where the President is calling for Israeli operations in Rafah to stop.”

French President Emmanuel Macron this week repeatedly called for Israel to halt operations in the Palestinian city of Rafah, saying on Monday he was outraged by Israeli strikes that killed many displaced people. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been a topic of hot debate in France, and Armed Forces Minister Sebastien Lecornu has faced multiple questions from lawmakers in recent months about the country’s defense exports to Israel.

More than 70 Israeli companies had been scheduled to participate in the Eurosatory defense show, which officially kicks off in Paris on June 17. That included Israel’s three largest defense firms, Israel Aerospace Industries, Elbit Systems and Rafael Advance Defense Systems. Elbit has been planning to present its PULS multiple-rocket launcher and the Sigma next-generation howitzer, the firm told Defense News before news of the ban.

See also  European Union Considers Sanctions On Israel For Defying Icj Orders To Suspend Military Operations In Rafah

In line with the French government decision, there will be no stand from the Israeli defense and security industry at Eurosatory 2024, according to show organizer Coges Events, which declined further comment.

Israel was the world’s ninth-largest arms exporter in the 2019-2023 period, accounting for an average 2.4% of global arms exports, according to the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

The country’s defense exports rose 9.7% to a record U.S. $12.5 billion in 2022, according to the most recent figures reported by the Ministry of Defense, with $3.67 billion for Europe. Unmanned aerial vehicles and related drone systems made up a quarter of Israel’s 2022 defense exports, with missiles, rockets and air-defense systems accounting for about a fifth.

Recommended For You

About the Author: Akelicious

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *