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Mixed reactions over Greek plan to sell bombs and missiles to Saudi Arabia

By Issac Kitti

Greece has initiated plans to sell extra bombs, missiles and ammunitions worth 66 million euros to Saudi Arabia in the midst of ongoing war in Yemen.

A political dispute breaks out in Athens-Greece over the controversial arms deal with Saudi fuming while opposition leaders and critics of the government condemning the Greece arms deal to Saudi Arabia.

Politicians opposing the Greek administration which is led by the leftist syriza party accuses it of not adhering to the right procedures for international agreement as well as faulting selling weapons to Saudi Arabia a country involved in war.

It is in the global attention that Saudi is currently leading a coalition of countries steering war in the neighbouring country Yemen- a poorest state in the Arabian gulf.

Leaders from the centre right opposition party the New Democracy claim defense minister Panos Kammenos, illegally employed a private broker to negotiate terms of agreement with Saudi an allegation the minister denied. The Greek law outlines such agreements are to be handled by government officials.

The opposition party New democracy has previously called for Mr. Kammenos to step aside over the controversial arms deal saying in a statement that the provocative agreement was executed without transparency.

In a heated debate in the Greek parliament on Monday, the opposition party leader Kyriakos Mitsoki called for an investigation into the arms deal and the alleged role of the private broker. Contrary to the opposition statements, Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras accused the opposition’s New Democracy and a media lobby of using the deal to unfairly target the government.

The arms deal has also necessitated legal objections within the leading party legislators who argue that Greece should not sell weapons to Saudi Arabia on political and moral grounds.

However, the United States and United Kingdom have supported the Saudi government as it progresses to lead coalition of countries blockading and bombing Yemen where it says it is fighting Iranian-backed Houthi rebels.

Over 8,600 people have lost their lives and 49,960 injured during the course of the war in Yemen which erupted in March 2015 sources from United Nations cite that 60 percent of the deaths are of civilians.

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