Germany’s uranium export to Russia may have violated EU law
Share article:
Share article:

Germany’s uranium export to Russia may have violated EU law

Credit: IEC Blog

The German government is facing accusations of violating EU law by exporting depleted uranium to Russia, for which the European Commission may initiate legal proceedings against Germany.

Depleted uranium can be processed and made into projectiles, like bullets. Due to the high density of the material, projectiles made out of depleted uranium are very effective at penetrating targets like armoured vehicles.

Two German Members of Parliament, Sylvia Kotting-Uhl and Oliver Kirschner, have called on the Commission to determine whether Germany has violated the EU sanctions against Russia, according to a letter seen by EURACTIV.

The sanctions were installed after the annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea in 2014. Following the sanctions, it is illegal to export goods that can be used for both military and non-military purposes (dual-use goods) to Russia.

The German depleted uranium was exported from the URENCO company in Westphalia to Russia.

In Russia, the uranium was transported to Novouralsk, a city that has been closed off to the outside world. During the Soviet era, Novouralsk produced nuclear weapons in secret.

In 2019, a report by the German Federal Office of Economics and Export Control (BAFA) concluded that the uranium would only be used for civilian end-use.

Last week, however, European law legal expert Bernhard Wegener from the University of Erlangen/Nuremberg reported that the German government has no way of knowing where the exported uranium was taken to, or what it is being used for.

On Wednesday, Germany’s Foreign Minister Heiko Maas threatened to increase sanctions against Russia if it did not support the investigation into the poisoning of Russian anti-corruption activist Alexei Navalny.

Amée Zoutberg
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Cinemas will require Covid Safe Ticket from Friday
The Covid Safe Ticket (CST) will be required to attend cinemas across Belgium from Friday, which marks the start of the autumn holidays, the ...
Disastrous year for Belgian beekeepers
Belgian beekeepers have experienced a disastrous year, with honey production 50 to 60 percent lower than last year due to heavy rainfall during ...
New measures for schools considered as situation becomes ‘untenable’
Belgium's various education partners met on Wednesday to discuss additional measures to implement in schools as the coronavirus situation worsens in ...
Belgium in Brief: Back To Masks
I really hope you didn't throw out all your masks. You'll be needing them again. Now I do appreciate that this isn't a huge change for ...
Belgium a climate slowcoach as EU reveals emissions progress
The European Union is on track to pass its first big climate test, according to new figures published this week. But Belgium has been singled out for ...
Limiting private contacts ‘needed to fight autumn wave’, expert warns
The Consultative Committee announced it is introducing a handful of measures in public spaces to control the quickening spread of the coronavirus, ...
Belgium’s decision on possible third shot postponed until Saturday
The decision on how Belgium will proceed with the roll-out of third shots of the coronavirus vaccine has been postponed until Saturday.  The news ...
Experts and politicians respond to new coronavirus measures
The handful of measures (re-)introduced by Belgium's Consultative Committee on Tuesday in response to the worsening coronavirus situation have had a ...
New fraudulent e-mails circulating in Belgium
A warning has been put out about new phishing e-mails that have been circulating since last Saturday and are sent from what could appear to be an ...
Belgian ‘Space Bakery’ project highlighted at World Expo in Dubai
The Puratos Space Bakery project is taking centre stage at the Belgian pavilion in Dubai, where the World Expo is taking place. This week is ...
Brussels metro lines disrupted by strike action
Four of the Brussels metro lines (M1, M2, M5, and M6) are delayed on Wednesday morning following union strikes commencing at 9:00 AM. The Brussels ...
Arrival of Dutch company will double the number of rental mopeds in Brussels
The arrival of 500 new e-mopeds from Dutch rental company GO Sharing will double the amount of rental mopeds in Brussels. While sometimes also ...