The French foreign, economy and armed forces ministers reported at the closing session of the National Assembly that Egypt had topped the list of French arms importers. According to the report, Egypt requested French weapons worth EUR 4.5 billion in 2021.
Egypt came ahead of many other importers, including Greece (2 billion euros), Croatia (971 million euros), India (492 million) and Saudi Arabia (381 million). French arms exports doubled last year to 11.7 billion euros, placing France as the world’s third largest exporter of military equipment after the United States and Russia. Near and the Middle East sales account for 44% of overall sales. The credit for this is due to combat aircraft produced by Dassault Aviation, of which France has sold 30 Rafales to Egypt.
Human Rights Watch had called on France to suspend all arms sales to the Egyptian government, against the background of a Disclose investigation, which revealed a secret operation in which French military intelligence helped the Egyptian Air Force target civilians under the guise of combating terrorism.