France probes Israeli arms sales to Ivory Coast

11th February 2005, Comments 0 comments

JERUSALEM, Feb 11 (AFP) - France has asked Israel for a list of firms that sold weapons to the Ivory Coast, amid accusations Israeli drones may have been used in a government air raid that left nine French peacekeepers dead, a report said Friday.

JERUSALEM, Feb 11 (AFP) - France has asked Israel for a list of firms that sold weapons to the Ivory Coast, amid accusations Israeli drones may have been used in a government air raid that left nine French peacekeepers dead, a report said Friday.

The request was transmitted to the Israeli defence ministry's head of security, Yehiel Horev, the liberal daily Haaretz said.

The French embassy in Tel Aviv declined to comment on the report. According to the paper, France holds Israeli armament manufacturers indirectly responsible for the deaths of the nine soldiers last November in an air raid that brought relations between Paris and its former colony to an all-time low.

"The French say the soldiers where killed when drones and surveillance systems assisted the Ivory Coast air force in attacking a base where they were stationed," Haaretz said.

The Israeli manufacturers deny responsibility and have told the defense ministry that any deliveries were made well in advance of the November attack.

A government ban on arms sales to the African country has been in force ever since at the French government's request, Haaretz added.

© AFP

Subject: French News

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