Britain Revokes Israel Arms Permits

Britain has revoked licenses for the sale of military components to Israel after conducting an export review in the wake of Israel’s war on Gaza, officials have said.

Five arms-export licenses have been cancelled out of 182 that Britain had granted to companies, an Israeli official said on Monday.

The licenses all involved parts for the Saar Corvette, a boat used in Israel’s 22-day military offensive on the Palestinian territory in December and January.

The British embassy in Tel Aviv said that a "small number" of export licenses had been revoked but said no arms embargo on Israel is in place.

"There are no security agreements between the UK and Israel," an embassy spokeswoman said.

"UK policy remains to assess all export licenses to Israel against the consolidated EU and national arms export licensing criteria."

‘Insignificant’ Change

Israel’s defense ministry had no immediate comment on the British decision.

Avigdor Lieberman, Israel’s foreign minister, said that the cancellations were not of any significance.

"Israel has known many cases of embargo in the past," he told Israel Radio.

"We always knew how to get by, and there is no need to get excited about this."

The Israeli government was internationally criticized over the high number of Palestinian civilian deaths during its 22-day war on Gaza.

At least 1,400 people, mostly women and children, died during the assault by Israeli forces, the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights estimates.

The Israeli army puts the number of civilian deaths at a third of that figure.

The Israeli government says thirteen Israelis died over the course of the war, which had the stated aim of preventing Palestinian rocket attacks into Israeli territory.
 
(Agencies)

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