Germany's co-governing Greens on Monday took a stand against a possible purchase of Chinese drones for the country's civil protection, local media reported.
"We think that's a bad idea," said Omid Nouripour, the Greens' co-chairman, following a meeting of his party in the capital Berlin.
Referring to media reports about a likely Chinese drone deal, Nouripur said: "It is wrong to buy from a regime where we know that electronics are used massively in this country for surveillance. We shouldn't make ourselves even more dependent on autocratic states and dictatorships in areas like surveillance, which are so critical."
According to a report by the NDR and WDR public broadcasting network, the Interior Ministry plans to buy more than 60 drones of the type DJI Matrice 300 to explore disaster areas and search for missing persons during natural catastrophes.
Meanwhile, an unnamed spokesman for the Social Democratic-led Interior Ministry defended the plans but made clear no bid has yet been made.
"For the area of civil protection, there are currently no concerns about the use of drones due to the operational requirements and the operational areas," the spokesman added.
Germany has lately started a strategic review of its relations with China as Berlin is forced to cope with its economic reliance on an increasingly belligerent Asian superpower.
At the urging of Chancellor Olaf Scholz, the Cabinet recently decided that a Chinese company could take a stake in a terminal in the port of Hamburg.
However, planned deals by Chinese investors with two German chipmaking companies were stopped by the center-left government coalition.
Source: Anadolu Agency