/ 10 September 2012

South Africa sold weapons to Zimbabwe

National conventional arms control committee chair Jeff Radebe.
National conventional arms control committee chair Jeff Radebe.

Reports say the South African government has recently sold defence force weapons worth R2.25-million to Zimbabwe.

Beeld reported on Monday this was revealed in the latest quarterly report of the national conventional arms control committee.

According to the committee's report for the period April 1 to June 30, the government approved contracts worth R2.8-billion during this time.

Contracts with 50 countries were signed, among them India, Gabon, the US and China.

Justice minister and chairperson of the committee Jeff Radebe said in 2011 government would not approve permits for the sale of weapons to countries with "political complications".

This included Gabon, Syria, Yemen and Zimbabwe, Radebe said.

According to the report, the weapons sold to Zimbabwe fall mainly into the C category, which consists mostly of support equipment like teargas.

"There has been a de facto embargo on the export of weapons to Zimbabwe for more than a decade," said DA MP David Maynier.

Radebe's spokesperson Mthunzi Mhaga did not respond to queries from Beeld. – Sapa