Iran’s Permanent Envoy to the United Nations, Majid Takht-e Ravanchi slammed the U.S. and Saudi Arabia for promoting an arms race in the region through their military expenditure.
Ravanchi said on his twitter page on Monday night that the recent report released by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) about the 2019 world military expenditure “is quite revealing”, pointing out that the U.S. and Saudi Arabia are in the top five of that list.
“U.S. top spender with $732 billion, 3.4% of its GDP. Saudi Arabia is 5th with $61.9 billion, 8% of its GDP. Iran is 18th with $12.6 billion, 2.3% of its GDP. So, who is advancing arms race in our region?” he asked.
A report by SIPRI said that of the 15 countries in the world with the highest defense budgets, six are NATO members: Canada, France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Their combined military expenditure makes up for almost half of the world’s total figure. In 2019, the total military expenditure of NATO’s 29 member states was some $1.04 trillion.
According to the SIPRI report, in 2019, the U.S. was responsible for 38% of global military expenditure, totaling $732 billion. The increase over its 2018 budget alone amounted to the equivalent of Germany’s total expenditure in 2019.
Those funds went to cover some 16,000 extra military personnel, along with the modernization of its conventional weaponry and nuclear arsenal.