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Arms Sold:

ASIS

Orbiter

Falcon Eye Mini

ATMOS-2000

Model-839

Companies:

NICE Systems

Israel Weapon Industries (IWI)

Innocon

Soltam Systems

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Uganda

Introduction:

 

Israel and Uganda keep close bilateral cooperation, that includes among others agriculture, postharvest technology, water management, military and homeland security. Israel supplied Uganda with artillery, mortars, rifles, surveillance systems and the upgrade of older fighter jets. Also training of Ugandan forces by Israel was documented. Different reports show that Israeli companies sold surveillance programs to Uganda, that in some cases were used for spying after human rights defenders.

Israel – Uganda Relations:

 

In the wake of the Entebbe Raid in 1976 – and even after the end of Idi Amin’s rule in 1979 – Israel-Ugandan relations remained low and struggled to improve. At the early 2000s however, relations have warmed as both countries have worked to resuscitate political, diplomatic and militaristic ties.

Bilateral cooperation between Uganda and Israel encompasses agriculture, postharvest technologies, animal husbandry, water management, health, military and homeland security.[1]

Uganda imports from Israel were $7.17 Million during 2018, according to the United Nations COMTRADE database on international trade.[2] The main goods being exported from Israel as to 2019 are in the machinery and electrical equipment sector, aircrafts and articles of iron and steel.

Military Relations:

 

Israel-Ugandan military relations involved the supply of artillery and mortars, surveillance equipment and the upgrading of older fighter jets. In addition, Israeli defense firms have trained Ugandan security forces in both Israel and Africa[3].

There is also visual documentation of Ugandan Armed Forces, especially of the Special Forces Command (SFC), that serves as a private and independent security force of the president Yoweri Museveni, with Tavor rifles, Galil ACE and Uzi machine guns in their hands.[4]

An UN report from 2015 shows that Israeli Galil rifles that were purchased by Uganda at 2007 were transferred to South-Sudan and were involved in indiscriminate killing, rape, pillaging, destruction of infrastructure and uprooting of civilians from their homes. [5][6]

An investigation of a Buzzfeed journalist from 2015 implies that the Israeli company NICE supplied surveillance programs to Uganda, that were used to hack into phones of activists for rights of LGBTIQ in the country. [7] Another investigation of the Israeli newspaper Haaretz shows that many Israeli private cyber security companies sold surveillance and intelligence programs to Uganda.[8] The controversial hacking program “Pegasus” from the Israeli company NSO Group was used in Uganda too, so published in Financial Times in 2019.[9]

In 2013 was reported that Israel is supplying Uganda with military equipment and support in exchange for the agreement of Uganda to receive Eritrean refugees that sought asylum in Israel. In 2017 Uganda was one of three countries Israel signed a refugee deportation agreement with, in exchange for Israeli weapons, military training and other forms of aid.[10] In 2018 ‘Haaretz’ published that despite likely persecution for their sexual orientation or gender identity in Uganda, Israel intended to deport LGBTIQ asylum seekers to the country. [11]

In a visit to Israel in 2011 Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with talks focusing on agricultural inputs and military aid. At 2016 and 2020 Netanyahu visited Uganda and met Museveni. Mossad Chief Yossi Cohen joined the premier’s delegation.[12] Netanyahu and Museveni talked about closer cooperation in cyber security. [13]

At 2019 an Israeli Defense Ministry delegation, led by the head of IMOD’s SIBAT director, Michel Ben Baruch, met Ugandan Minister of State of Defense Charles Engola to discuss defense cooperation between the two countries.

Usage of Israeli Arms:

 
  • Cardom RMS, ATMOS-2000, Model-839 – in usage of Ugandan Armed Forces. May have been used in Ugandan ongoing conflict with the rebel group LRA (the Lord’s Resistance Army).[14]
  • Mig-21 combat aircraft with an Israeli upgrade – Ugandan Air Force. Were used during joint DRC-Ugandan operations in late 2008 against the LRA.[15]
  • Vulcanair P68, P92 Echo aircraft – In usage by Uganda People’s Defense Forces. Reportedly used against LRA.[16]
  • Galil ACE Rifles – Usage by Uganda People’s Defense Forces. Rifles were transferred to South-Sudan and were used in the civil war there. The rifles took part in violations of human rights and crimes against humanity. [17]
  • Israeli Hacking and Surveillance program developed by NICE – Uganda uses the program to do surveillance on LGBTIQ-activists in Uganda. [18]

Human Rights Violations:

 

The Ugandan government undermines freedom of expression and association by imposing regulations restricting online activities and stifling independent media. Arrests of political opponents and blockades of political and student rallies occurred in 2019. In 2018, 34 political opponents were tortured by security operatives in Aura, so was reported.[19] 

In addition, there are many reports of arbitrary detentions and prosecutions of outspoken critics, feminists, human rights defenders and LGBTIQ activists.[20] Regarding the LGBTIQ community, same-sex relations remained illegal in Uganda in 2019.[21]. Events and gatherings by the LGBTIQ community have been raided and stopped.[22]. In October 2019 Ugandan police arrested 16 LGBTIQ activists and subjected them to forced physical examinations. In November 2019 67 LGBTIQ people were arrested at a bar popular with the community. At least four LGBTIQ members were beaten and killed in different incidents in 2019.

Sales Records Table:

Download as XLS or PDF or view the Google-Doc

Product
Company
Year
Deal Size
Comments
Source
Galil ACE Rifles
IWI
2007
https://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/2016/70, https://www.conflictarm.com/reports/weapon-supplies-into-south-sudans-civil-war/, https://english.alaraby.co.uk/english/indepth/2016/9/10/israels-role-in-south-sudan-under-scrutiny-amid-violence
ASIS (Airborne Surveilance and Intelligence System)
Innocon
2002
payload installed on P92 Echo aircrafts. enables capability of UAV
photo, https://ugandaradionetwork.net/story/government-considers-proposals-for-the-purchase-of-unmanned-aircraft
Electro-optical surveillance equipment
Innocon
2009
payload for Ugandan Vulcanair P68 aircrafts
https://www.flightglobal.com/israels-innocon-responds-to-ugandan-uav-request/86667.article
upgrade of Ugandan MiG-21
IAI
2003
including training of pilots
https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/files/misc/SIPRIBP1110.pdf, http://www.mig-21.de/english/newsarchive/iai2004.htm
2 Orbiter II drones
Aeronautics
2011
https://dronewarsuk.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/israel-and-the-drone-wars.pdf, https://www.flightglobal.com/ugandan-army-to-acquire-orbiter-uavs/98252.article
Falcon Eye Mini UAVs
Innocon
2009-2011
not officialy confirmed
https://dronewarsuk.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/israel-and-the-drone-wars.pdf
surveillance technologies
Nice Systems
2015
sold to Uganda through Italian company
https://www.calcalist.co.il/internet/articles/0,7340,L-3667828,00.html
18 Cardom 120mm Recoil Mortar Systems
Soltam
2008 (2009)
Sipri
3 Autonomous Truck Mounted Howitzer System (ATMOS-2000 155mm)
Soltam
2008 (2009)
Sipri
3 Autonomous Truck Mounted Howitzer System (ATMOS-2000 155mm)
Soltam
2003 (2005)
$5m
Sipri
18 Model-839 towed guns 155mm
Soltam
2002
Sipri

1. ^ https://www.aa.com.tr/en/africa/uganda-israel-deepen-cooperation/468457

2. ^ https://tradingeconomics.com/uganda/imports/israel

3. ^ https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/files/misc/SIPRIBP1110.pdf

4. ^ https://documentcloud.adobe.com/link/track?uri=urn%3Aaaid%3Ascds%3AUS%3A779d47a9-223f-4ac2-a381-e97351b734cd#pageNum=5

5. ^ https://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/2016/70, https://www.conflictarm.com/reports/weapon-supplies-into-south-sudans-civil-war, https://english.alaraby.co.uk/english/indepth/2016/9/10/israels-role-in-south-sudan-under-scrutiny-amid-violence

6. ^ https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-israel-supplies-s-sudan-gov-t-with-spy-tools-1.5396198

7. ^ https://www.972mag.com/are-idf-intelligence-vets-helping-uganda-hunt-down-lgbts/

8. ^ https://www.haaretz.co.il/magazine/.premium-MAGAZINE-1.6569594?lts=1594806872416

9. ^ https://www.ft.com/content/d9127eae-f99d-11e9-98fd-4d6c20050229

10. ^ https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/did-israel-make-a-refugees-for-arms-deal-with-uganda-1.5450762

11. ^ https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/.premium-lgbt-asylum-seekers-in-israel-won-t-be-shielded-from-deportation-1.5868046

12. ^ https://www.independent.co.ug/netanyahu-in-2nd-official-visit-to-uganda/

13. ^ https://www.reuters.com/article/us-israel-uganda/uganda-studying-opening-embassy-in-jerusalem-museveni-tells-netanyahu-idUSKBN1ZX1Y6

14. ^ https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/files/misc/SIPRIBP1110.pdf

15. ^ https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/files/misc/SIPRIBP1110.pdf

16. ^ https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/files/misc/SIPRIBP1110.pdf

17. ^ https://www.timesofisrael.com/as-south-sudan-bloodies-itself-israeli-arms-sales-questioned/

18. ^ https://www.calcalist.co.il/internet/articles/0,7340,L-3667828,00.html

19. ^ https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2020/country-chapters/uganda

20. ^ https://www.amnesty.org/en/countries/africa/uganda/report-uganda/

21. ^ https://www.amnesty.org.uk/ugandas-anti-homosexuality-bill-becomes-law

22. ^ https://www.kuchutimes.com/2019/05/uganda-police-disrupt-and-shut-down-event-organised-to-celebrate-the-international-day-against-homophobia-and-transphobia-idahot/

Uganda

Israel and Uganda keep close bilateral cooperation, that includes among others agriculture, postharvest technology, water management, military and homeland security. Israel supplied Uganda with artillery, mortars, rifles, surveillance systems and the upgrade of older fighter jets. Also training of Ugandan forces by Israel was documented. Different reports show that Israeli companies sold surveillance programs to Uganda, that in some cases were used for spying after human rights defenders.

In the wake of the Entebbe Raid in 1976 – and even after the end of Idi Amin’s rule in 1979 – Israel-Ugandan relations remained low and struggled to improve. At the early 2000s however, relations have warmed as both countries have worked to resuscitate political, diplomatic and militaristic ties.

Bilateral cooperation between Uganda and Israel encompasses agriculture, postharvest technologies, animal husbandry, water management, health, military and homeland security.[1]

Uganda imports from Israel were $7.17 Million during 2018, according to the United Nations COMTRADE database on international trade.[2] The main goods being exported from Israel as to 2019 are in the machinery and electrical equipment sector, aircrafts and articles of iron and steel.

Israel-Ugandan military relations involved the supply of artillery and mortars, surveillance equipment and the upgrading of older fighter jets. In addition, Israeli defense firms have trained Ugandan security forces in both Israel and Africa[3].

There is also visual documentation of Ugandan Armed Forces, especially of the Special Forces Command (SFC), that serves as a private and independent security force of the president Yoweri Museveni, with Tavor rifles, Galil ACE and Uzi machine guns in their hands.[4]

An UN report from 2015 shows that Israeli Galil rifles that were purchased by Uganda at 2007 were transferred to South-Sudan and were involved in indiscriminate killing, rape, pillaging, destruction of infrastructure and uprooting of civilians from their homes. [5][6]

An investigation of a Buzzfeed journalist from 2015 implies that the Israeli company NICE supplied surveillance programs to Uganda, that were used to hack into phones of activists for rights of LGBTIQ in the country. [7] Another investigation of the Israeli newspaper Haaretz shows that many Israeli private cyber security companies sold surveillance and intelligence programs to Uganda.[8] The controversial hacking program “Pegasus” from the Israeli company NSO Group was used in Uganda too, so published in Financial Times in 2019.[9]

In 2013 was reported that Israel is supplying Uganda with military equipment and support in exchange for the agreement of Uganda to receive Eritrean refugees that sought asylum in Israel. In 2017 Uganda was one of three countries Israel signed a refugee deportation agreement with, in exchange for Israeli weapons, military training and other forms of aid.[10] In 2018 ‘Haaretz’ published that despite likely persecution for their sexual orientation or gender identity in Uganda, Israel intended to deport LGBTIQ asylum seekers to the country. [11]

In a visit to Israel in 2011 Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni met Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with talks focusing on agricultural inputs and military aid. At 2016 and 2020 Netanyahu visited Uganda and met Museveni. Mossad Chief Yossi Cohen joined the premier’s delegation.[12] Netanyahu and Museveni talked about closer cooperation in cyber security. [13]

At 2019 an Israeli Defense Ministry delegation, led by the head of IMOD’s SIBAT director, Michel Ben Baruch, met Ugandan Minister of State of Defense Charles Engola to discuss defense cooperation between the two countries.

  • Cardom RMS, ATMOS-2000, Model-839 – in usage of Ugandan Armed Forces. May have been used in Ugandan ongoing conflict with the rebel group LRA (the Lord’s Resistance Army).[14]
  • Mig-21 combat aircraft with an Israeli upgrade – Ugandan Air Force. Were used during joint DRC-Ugandan operations in late 2008 against the LRA.[15]
  • Vulcanair P68, P92 Echo aircraft – In usage by Uganda People’s Defense Forces. Reportedly used against LRA.[16]
  • Galil ACE Rifles – Usage by Uganda People’s Defense Forces. Rifles were transferred to South-Sudan and were used in the civil war there. The rifles took part in violations of human rights and crimes against humanity. [17]
  • Israeli Hacking and Surveillance program developed by NICE – Uganda uses the program to do surveillance on LGBTIQ-activists in Uganda. [18]

The Ugandan government undermines freedom of expression and association by imposing regulations restricting online activities and stifling independent media. Arrests of political opponents and blockades of political and student rallies occurred in 2019. In 2018, 34 political opponents were tortured by security operatives in Aura, so was reported.[19] In addition, there are many reports of arbitrary detentions and prosecutions of outspoken critics, feminists, human rights defenders and LGBTIQ activists.[20] Regarding the LGBTIQ community, same-sex relations remained illegal in Uganda in 2019.[21]. Events and gatherings by the LGBTIQ community have been raided and stopped.[22]. In October 2019 Ugandan police arrested 16 LGBTIQ activists and subjected them to forced physical examinations. In November 2019 67 LGBTIQ people were arrested at a bar popular with the community. At least four LGBTIQ members were beaten and killed in different incidents in 2019.

Download as XLS or PDF or view the Google-Doc

Product
Company
Year
Deal Size
Comments
Source
Galil ACE Rifles
IWI
2007
https://www.un.org/ga/search/view_doc.asp?symbol=S/2016/70, https://www.conflictarm.com/reports/weapon-supplies-into-south-sudans-civil-war/, https://english.alaraby.co.uk/english/indepth/2016/9/10/israels-role-in-south-sudan-under-scrutiny-amid-violence
ASIS (Airborne Surveilance and Intelligence System)
Innocon
2002
payload installed on P92 Echo aircrafts. enables capability of UAV
photo, https://ugandaradionetwork.net/story/government-considers-proposals-for-the-purchase-of-unmanned-aircraft
Electro-optical surveillance equipment
Innocon
2009
payload for Ugandan Vulcanair P68 aircrafts
https://www.flightglobal.com/israels-innocon-responds-to-ugandan-uav-request/86667.article
upgrade of Ugandan MiG-21
IAI
2003
including training of pilots
https://www.sipri.org/sites/default/files/files/misc/SIPRIBP1110.pdf, http://www.mig-21.de/english/newsarchive/iai2004.htm
2 Orbiter II drones
Aeronautics
2011
https://dronewarsuk.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/israel-and-the-drone-wars.pdf, https://www.flightglobal.com/ugandan-army-to-acquire-orbiter-uavs/98252.article
Falcon Eye Mini UAVs
Innocon
2009-2011
not officialy confirmed
https://dronewarsuk.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/israel-and-the-drone-wars.pdf
surveillance technologies
Nice Systems
2015
sold to Uganda through Italian company
https://www.calcalist.co.il/internet/articles/0,7340,L-3667828,00.html
18 Cardom 120mm Recoil Mortar Systems
Soltam
2008 (2009)
Sipri
3 Autonomous Truck Mounted Howitzer System (ATMOS-2000 155mm)
Soltam
2008 (2009)
Sipri
3 Autonomous Truck Mounted Howitzer System (ATMOS-2000 155mm)
Soltam
2003 (2005)
$5m
Sipri
18 Model-839 towed guns 155mm
Soltam
2002
Sipri