Written by 05:38 World

French Court Strikes Down Ban of Israeli Companies at Arms Show

A court in Paris ruled on Tuesday that France’s decision to bar Israeli companies from one of the world’s largest weapons shows was discriminatory and ordered the ban to be rescinded.

Eurosatory, an exhibition for the defense and armaments industry held every two years northeast of Paris, opened on Monday without any Israeli representatives. The organizers had complied with a French government order to cancel their invitations because of Israel’s military offensive in Gaza.

The government’s decision, which has prompted legal challenges, was made last month after an Israeli strike killed dozens of Palestinians in a tent camp in Rafah, in southern Gaza. President Emmanuel Macron of France said at the time that he was “outraged” by the strike and declared that such Israeli operations “must stop.”

Days later, the French Defense Ministry said that “the conditions are no longer conducive to receiving Israeli companies” at Eurosatory, “at a time when the French president is calling for an end to Israeli operations in Rafah.”

The company that organizes Eurosatory, COGES Events, a subsidiary of a trade association of French defense and security industries, barred Israeli companies from operating booths at the show and removed mention of them from its website.

More than 2,000 exhibitors from over 60 countries are at Eurosatory, where military and security officials from around the world rub shoulders with manufacturers showcasing drones, missiles, and other weapons and technologies.

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Last modified: 20 June 2024
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