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Criticism of new Swedish business with Saudi Arabia

Tuesday, 20 March 2012
Sweden has tried to sell a comprehensive monitoring system to Saudi Arabia, media reports in Sweden say. This has ignited more criticism for that Sweden is gradually looking at weapons export as its main economic stay.

According to the newspaper Expressen, sources say that weaponry system could be used for advanced monitoring of the country’s own citizens. The prospective suppliers claim that this was "a Swedish SOS Alarm Central."

“I think it is unacceptable to be engaged in this type of collaboration,” says Left Party foreign policy spokesman, Hans Linde.

Expressen published a letter to the Saudi Interior Minister, from the Swedish Trade minister, Ewa Björling 2009, where she offers a collaboration on security. Björling's press secretary told the newspaper that it was about "civil security" and that the draft contract was never signed.

A few weeks ago radio Sweden revealed that the agency FOI had created a front or ghost company to secretly build a large weapons factory in Saudi Arabia.

The revelation among other things, led to a debate on Swedish arms exports to dictatorships. Last year, Sweden exported military equipments worth $13.9 billion. Saudi Arabia was the second-largest buyer.
by Team

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