3 December 2016
After repeated questions from the Die Linke opposition party, the German government has admitted that the US Air Force is using its Ramstein base to control drone strikes which are used in anti-terror operations and to carry out extra-legal killings, German MP Andrej Hunko told Sputnik Deutschland.
The US Air Force is using its Ramstein Air Base in Germany to carry
out controversial drone attacks, the German government has admitted
after an inquiry from the opposition Die Linke party.
The Ramstein Air Base is located in Rhineland-Palatinate, southwest Germany. It serves as headquarters for US Air Force Europe, and is also used as a NATO base.
In August the US military informed the German federal government about Ramstein's use as a control center for drones, but Berlin has waited until the beginning of December to release the information.
In response to a question from Die Linke, the German federal
government has said that the "planning, monitoring and evaluation" of
drone operations was carried out at Ramstein.
In July the Obama administration claimed that between 64 and 116 civilians have been killed by 473 drone strikes in Libya, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen since the beginning of his presidency in 2009. The admission was slammed by watchdog organizations, which estimate that as many as 1,100 civilians have been killed as a result of drone strikes during the Obama administration.
According to research by the London-based Bureau of Investigative
Journalism, in Pakistan alone the US has carried out 424 drone
strikes since 2004, which have killed between 424 and 966
civilians, including up to 207 children.
"I have been calling for the UN to implement an
international convention on drones, like the conventions on
landmines and chemical weapons. Furthermore, extralegal killings
would have to be banned. This has not been regulated
internationally. The Council of Europe has adopted a very good
resolution, in which the Parliamentary Assembly calls on
individual EU governments to ensure that such illegal operations
are not being carried out with support from their territory.
However, ultimately an international convention is still