BERLIN Oct 5 The German defence ministry said
it will not appeal a Sept. 2 court ruling saying that the
government has no right to compensation from Heckler & Koch
(IPO-HIK.L) for what Berlin says were faulty G36 assault rifles.
The ministry will now focus on continuing its efforts to
procure a successor model to the G36 rifle after it is retired
in coming years, state secretary Markus Gruebel told lawmakers
in the letter.
The ministry has previously said it expects to launch a
procurement for a new rifle before the end of the year.
The case demonstrates the importance of measures the
ministry is taking including beefing up its legal expertise and
writing more detailed provisions into contracts, Gruebel said.
Berlin has said the G36, which is standard issue for
militaries across the globe and has been used by the German army
for nearly 20 years, does not shoot straight in hot weather or
when it heats up through constant firing.
Berlin, which has bought about 180,000 of the rifles since
1996, sought compensation for about 4,000 of the rifles it
received from Heckler & Koch.
The maker said the rifles it delivered complied with the
specifications agreed with the government in 1996.
While the court did not comment on whether the rifles shoot
straight when they heat up, it said they met the specifications
set out in the purchase contracts. The rifles also passed the
quality and acceptance testing laid out in the contracts, it
(Reporting by Andrea Shalal; Editing by Hugh Lawson)