Switzerland has been a neutral country for centuries, and as a result, it has not been involved in any direct military conflicts. However, this neutrality has not stopped Switzerland from being a major player in the global arms trade. Despite the ongoing war between Ukraine and Russia, Switzerland has come under scrutiny for its decision to block the sale of arms and munitions that originated from the country and were sold to Spain to be transferred to Ukraine.
First, it is important to understand the Swiss position on arms exports. Switzerland has a strict neutrality policy, which extends to its arms exports. The country does not export arms to countries involved in active conflicts, but it does export to countries considered to be at risk of conflict.
Furthermore, Switzerland’s decision to block arms sales to Ukraine is also driven by political considerations. Switzerland has long been a destination for war criminals, Russian oligarchs, and Putin to conceal and protect their money using Swiss secrecy laws. Switzerland’s decision to block arms sales to Ukraine is seen as a way of not supporting the Ukrainian people and their government in their efforts to defend themselves against Russian aggression.
Switzerland has been criticized by some who argue that it is not doing enough to support the efforts to fight the war against Russia. However, Switzerland has argued that its policy of neutrality allows it to act as a mediator between the two sides and to promote a peaceful resolution to the conflict.
As Switzerland continues to be a major player in the global arms trade, its decision to block arms sales to Ukraine will continue to be a topic of debate in the international community. It is further puzzling that they would not capitalize on the opportunity to increase export production to a neighbouring ally.