Letter from the Government
Arms Exports to Israel: Reply to Quadripartite
Letter of 4 April 2006.
Thank you for your letter of 4 April requesting
additional information on exports to Israel.
Firstly, I confirm government policy is as it
was set out in October 2002. This letter is in accordance with
declared policy and relays our position on monitoring use that
we have previously given the Committee in some detail.
You asked for clarification about how Government
applies the policy to items that could be used both to defend
Israel against external attack and which could be "deployed
aggressively in the Occupied Territories".
All export licence applications to Israel are judged
on a case by case basis against the Consolidated EU and National
Arms Export Licensing Criteria which include scrutiny against
the risk of use for internal repression, external aggression and
the risk of diversion. If we consider that there is a clear risk
that equipment might be used in the OTs, we refuse the application.
You also seek clarification of how the policy
applies to components, both equipment used (or to be used) by
the Israeli authorities and equipment intended for re-export but
where there is a risk of diversion to use by Israel.
Any applications that are for final end use
by the Israeli authorities are assessed against the Criteria after
we have sought advice from Tel Aviv about what the Israeli authorities
would use the equipment for. Also considered is whether the end
user has used the equipment in a manner inconsistent with any
of the Criteria in the past.
Any application for incorporation to a third
country that contains equipment that might also be used by the
Israeli authorities are considered against the Criteria and other
announced government policy such as the Incorporation Factors
(July 8 2002, Column: 653W and Column: 654W). Point (e) of the
Incorporation Factors is the standing of the entity to which
the goods are to be exported. All such applications have supporting
documentation from the third countries in the form of purchase
orders, contracts or end user undertakings.
By assessing any potential export against the
Criteria we assess the risk of diversion within Israel and within
the country of final destination. If we have any concerns about
diversion for an application, we recommend refusal.
You also seek confirmation about assurances.
The reply to the PQ of 15 April 2002 still holds true about the
use of assurances; we do not use them. All decisions are made
using the Consolidated Criteria and other announced policy. (Column
721W 15/04/2002) http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200102/cmhansrd/vo020415/text/20415w08.htm£20415w08.htmlsbhd6
You ask us to explain how we ensure that items
exported to Israel are not used aggressively in the Occupied Territories
and how we monitor the use of equipment by the Israeli authorities
in the Occupied Territories to ensure that British policy on exports
is not breached.
HMG does not use end use monitoring to check
on exports of concern. HMG does not licence goods where we have
concerns about their use.
If despite careful consideration of the licence
application, concerns later arise over use of a UK export (from
observation by Post, media or non-governmental organisations)
these will be thoroughly investigated and appropriate action taken,
including the revoking of licences issued. Such concerns will
also be taken into account fully when future export licence applications