German Chancellor Says ‘Special Obligation to Support Israel’ Behind Sale of Advanced Missile Boats
Germany’s “special obligation to support Israel” was behind the country’s decision for continuing extensive military aid to the Jewish state, Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Tuesday.
Addressing students in Berlin, Merkel said “We sell weapons to Israel because we believe that Israel must defend itself and is often attacked.”
“We also believe that Germany has a special obligation to support Israel,” she said according to Bloomberg.
Her comments came as Germany began a special military aid program to Israel, which included four patriot missile batteries, according to the International Business Times.
In addition, Israel would receive 6 Saar missile boats to protect its offshore natural gas interests, which could face threats from Hezbollah and Hamas, including rocket attacks or offshore sabotage.
Details of the program were disclosed by Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon and German Defense Minister Ursula Von Der Leyen.
In the past, Germany’s ongoing sale of weapons to Israel has been criticized by anti-Israel activists.
In 2012, German writer Gunther Grass, who died this year, provoked outrage over a poem he published that criticized Germany for delivering nuclear submarines to Israel because of possible Israeli hostilities against Iran.