On the 26th of October, newspaper NRC and ‘Lighthouse reports’ revealed that Damen shipyards in 2012 sold 8 patrol vessels to the Libyan coastguard (1). At least three of those vessels, equipped with machine guns are currently used against migrants in the Mediterranean. The Dutch ministry of foreign affairs asserts Damen did not need an export license (2) because the so-called ‘mounts’ to which the automatic rifles are attached could also be used to bear flags, search lights or antennae. Evidence however shows that Damen intended to, in a second order, sell the Libyan coastguard machines guns to accompany the boats.
1. Is the HR/VP aware of the sale of the above-mentioned patrol vessels to the Libyan coastguard as well as the manner in which and by whom those boats, including the ‘Talil 267’ are currently being used?
2. Does the HR/VP agree that member states, when assessing export licence applications, should take into account not only the intended end use of the products, but also have to carry out a risk assessment, as proposed in the draft dual-use regulation, to ascertain the goods will not be used for other purposes?
3. What measures does the HR/VP and or the Commission have at their disposal against EU member states that either knowingly or unknowingly violate EU export regulations or sanctions?
(2) COUNCIL COMMON POSITION 2008/944/CFSP