France, Germany forced Greece to buy arms: MEP
Paris (AFP) May 7, 2010
France and Germany, while publicly urging Greece to make harsh public spending cuts, bullied its government to confirm billions of euros in arms deals, a leading Euro-MP alleged Friday.
Franco-German lawmaker Daniel Cohn-Bendit said that Paris and Berlin are seeking to force Prime Minister George Papandreou to spend Greece's scarce cash on submarines, a fleet of warships, helicopters and war planes.
The accusation drew a stern denial from the French government.
"Times are severe enough without wasting time on base controversies that lack any foundation," an aide to Prime Minister Francois Fillon told reporters.
Cohn-Bendit said he had met last week in Athens with Papandreou, a long-time friend of his, and accused Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel and France's President Nicolas Sarkozy of blackmailing the Greek leader.
Cohn-Bendit accused France and Germany of making their contributions to an IMF-led rescue package for the debt-ridden Greek economy contingent on Athens honouring massive arms deals signed by Papandreou's predecessor.
"It's incredible the way the Merkels and Sarkozys of this world treat a Greek prime minister," he declared, adding that Papandreou had recently met Sarkozy and French Prime Minister Francois Fillon in Paris.
"Mr Fillon and Mr Sarkozy told Mr Papandreou: 'We're going to raise the money to help you, but you are going to have to continue to pay the arms contracts that we have with you'," Cohn-Bendit said.
"In the past three months we have forced Greece to confirm several billion dollars in arms contracts. French frigates that the Greeks will have to buy for 2.5 billion euros. Helicopters, planes, German submarines."
Despite its economic woes, which recently deepened spectacularly when its credit rating was downgraded, Greece is one of Europe's biggest arms buyers, seeking to keep pace with its regional rival Turkey.
French lawmakers this week sealed France's 16.8-billion-euro (21-billion-dollar) contribution to a joint European-IMF loan package to save Greece from a debt default.
Cohn-Bendit, a former leader of the 1968 student revolt in Paris, is leader of the Green group in the European parliament.
Share This Article With Planet Earth
The Military Industrial Complex at SpaceWar.com
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at SpaceWar.com
Washington (UPI) May 6, 2010
Boeing is set to offer the Pentagon another multiyear deal for the V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft used in Iraq and Afghanistan by the U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Air Force in Iraq and Afghanistan, company officials said. "We're fully pursuing a second multiyear on the V-22," Boeing V-22 Program Manager Gene Cunningham said during a news conference at a Navy League-sponsored conference i ... read more
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2010 - SpaceDaily. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement|