Sanctus – Secretary for Homeland Security Nicola Allman today told the House of Deputies that her department was considering selling the embattled government of Huenya “surplus armaments” to supplement the government forces as the fight for control of the nation’s capital enters its second week. The move comes after the Secretary authorised the use of the Sanctarian Naval Base in the country to accomodate transfer of military aid to the nation from Haesan.
Guidelines of both the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Business, Industry, and Trade are that while the Divine Federation will not prevent private arms companies from selling to foreign governments, the government itself should refrain from selling, or even gifting, equipment, weapons and vehicles in use or formerly in use by the Sanctarian Defence Forces. Though only guidelines, and not a hard rule, successive governments have largely obeyed by it; should the government decide to sell systems and armaments no longer needed by the SDF to Huenya, most likely at a significantly reduced price, it would only be the third time since the foundation of modern Sanctaria that a government has decided to do so.
Answering questions from opposition parties, and backbench government MPs, in the House today, Allman said the government was watching “with concern” the developments in Hueyna. Foreign Secretary Kathryn Stewart last week moved critical embassy staff in the nation to the Naval Base after the capital’s Green Zone, where the embassies are located, was attacked; to date, the Sanctarian embassy remains undamaged, though empty. Travel to Huenya has been discouraged by the government, with direct civilian flights from Sanctarian territory suspended on advice of the Department of Infrastructure; aid flights and emergency evacuation flights operated by the government remain scheduled.
Allman did confirm that should the Sanctarian Naval Base be directly targeted by the Golden Blade militia, it would indeed constitute an attack on Sanctarian security and therefore be an exception to the constitution’s neutrality clause. “The Sanctarian Defence Forces is on high alert and ready to defend our interests in Huenya at a moments notice”, she told MPs today.
In response to accusations by some MPs that the nation of Xiomera was financing the revolts and attacks by the Golden Blade terrorist group, Allman said that Secretary Stewart was “working with our foreign intelligence community to better position our response to the gathered intelligence” and that the government was “reaching out to all governments in the region to use whatever influence they might have over or in this terrorist group in order to see a quick cessation to the military activities executed by them”.
BRIAN DeNOBLE, Defence & Security Editor