“A family was trying to escape, they were killed by Russian assassins. The killed, as it has now been proven, were French weapons sold in 2015 to circumvent sanctions”Mikhalo Podolik, adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, said on Twitter.
Asked by AFP, Thales denied bypassing sanctions against Russia. “Thales has always strictly adhered to French and international regulations, including in relation to the application of the 2014 European sanctions against Russia”the group said. “No defense equipment export contracts have been signed with Russia since 2014 and no deliveries have been made to Russia since the start of the conflict in Ukraine”Thales says, he has decided to stop his activities in Russia.
Equipment stamped “Made in Russia”
In his publication, Mr. Podolik relays the video of a Ukrainian blogger, Pavlo Kachchuk, analyzing the damage to a car in which the body of a woman killed in Bucha, near Kyiv, was found.
“How could poorly trained Russian soldiers shoot so accurately with outdated post-Soviet equipment?”, She wondered. “The answer was found in Vorzel (the town near Bucha, editor’s note), where our troops, after the Russian withdrawal, captured BMD-4 armored vehicles”, These armored vehicles are equipped “Fire control system that allows them to fire with great accuracy even in weather, wind or time of day. Components and technology sold to the Russian Federation by the French company Thales”Blogger continues.
He then shows a thermal camera which he claims was recovered from an abandoned Russian tank. The Thales logo is visible there, with the date 06/16 and mentioning made in Russia,
“It was assembled in Russia under license”Blame the blogger. “It is one of several schemes that allow French companies to circumvent the ban.”
The allegations follow online media disclosures in mid-March that France delivered military equipment, including thermal cameras, to Russia between 2015 and 2020, following European sanctions that followed Moscow’s annexation of Crimea. Happened.
The Ministry of the Armed Forces responded that these were contracts concluded before the sanctions imposed in July 2014 and that France had the right to fulfill, under “The so-called ‘grandfather’ clause”,
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