European Interest

European Defence Fund: immoral & illegal

flickr/DIE LINKE Nordrhein-Westfalen/CC BY 2.0

The multi-billion euro European Defence Fund (EDF) project contradicts the EU treaties according to Left MEPs backing the opening of legal proceedings in Germany against the project.

The parliamentary group of the DIE LINKE party will file the challenge at the German Federal Constitutional Court tomorrow, June 16.                                                              “The EDF is clearly not only a breach of the EU treaties but is a fundamental violation of the so-called EU peace project that will only benefit the arms industry,” says MEP Özlem Demirel (Die Linke, Germany) of the fund, an expression of the increasing militarization of EU foreign and security policy.                                                                              “Throwing billions into the arms industry is politically wrong, not least because this money could be used to tackle the economic, ecological and social crisis. Instead, we’re developing equipment to fuel violence and war.”                                                                        Worth almost €8 billion, the EDF means that, for the first time, large-scale funding will now flow from the EU budget to the military and defence industry. The EDF will mean the development of dangerous new weapons systems such as AI-supported armaments, the controversial Future Combat Air System, and Eurodrone.                                                         To circumvent Article 41(2) of the Treaty on European Union which prohibits ‘expenditure arising from operations having military or defence implications’ from being charged to the EU budget, the European Commission came up with a trick, earmarking the funds as “promoting competition” and “industrial policy”.                                                                  For Demirel, this was possible in part due to the “lack of transparency and lack of oversight by Parliament” in the various stages of development of the fund.

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