Vietnamese Dong Tam case: German press questions gun used to shoot and kill Mr. Le Dinh Kinh

Germany newspaper questioned the German MP5 gun, which was supposed to be used to shoot and kill Le Dinh Kinh

The Vietnamese police (the perpetrator has been identified as Senior Lieutenant Colonel Dang Viet Quang – reported this before the trial: see here) used the German Heckler & Koch MP5 gun to shoot death of Mr. Le Dinh Kinh or not? That is the main content of the article on the German daily TAZ (printed newspaper), published today September 16, 2020.

MP5 is a 9 mm submachine gun designed by Germany in the 1960s by a group of engineers from Heckler & Koch company of West Germany. Answering questions from the TAZ newspaper, Heckler & Koch said that the company has never sold MP5 guns to Vietnam before. Because of human rights violations in Vietnam, the German Federal Government has never approved the sale to this country.

However, Heckler & Koch explained that, during the Cold War the confrontation between the East and the West, Heckler & Koch received approval from the German Federal Government to license production (technology transfer and production permits) in 6 countries. They are: United Kingdom (1970), Greece (1977), Mexico (1982), Turkey (1982), Pakistan (1983) and Saudi Arabia (1985).

According to British weekly Jane’s Defense Weekly, in 2007, Vietnam bought 100 MP5 submachine guns (named SMG-PKs in Pakistan) and 50 PSR-90 sniper rifles from the state-owned POF weapons company located in Rawalpindi (Pakistan), followed by a similar deal last year.

The Vietnamese state-controlled media has also reported that Vietnam bought MP5 guns from Pakistan and Turkey to equip its special forces.

According to data from the United Nations Arms Registry (UNROCA), in 2016, Turkey sold Vietnam 915 MP5 guns, A3 version.

Statistics of the United Nations Arms Registry (UNROCA) 2016

Are Pakistan and Turkey allowed to sell MP5 guns to Vietnam?

Regarding TAZ’s question “Are Pakistan and Turkey allowed to sell MP5 guns to Vietnam?” Heckler & Koch’s Spokesman Marco Seliger replied “Licenses are always subject to special conditions imposed by the German Federal Government, including a ban on transfer or export.” The license only allows production to meet domestic demand, not to export.

In particular, Spokesman Marco Seliger noted, “we often find that there are companies that make weapons similar to the MP5 or other Heckler & Koch products, but without our firm’s license.” These are illegal “copied” products imitating gun production like that is a violation of our firm’s copyright.

Katja Keul, spokeswoman for the Green Party’s defense policy.

Green Party’s defense policy Spokeswoman Katja Keul told TAZ that such permits should never have been issued to third countries, because full control is not possible nor checking at all times. The licenses issued more than 30 years ago are still deadly today.

After the media questioned that Le Dinh Kinh was killed by the MP5 gun invented by Germany, perhaps in the coming time, the opposition parties will question the German Government about this issue and ask to make it clear.

The German MP5 gun is equipped for a special task force of the Hanoi riot police (Translated)