The Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) has warned that the British government must offer assurances that weapons manufactured by UK arms firms are not being deployed in Saudi Arabia’s airstrikes against Yemen.
Andrew Smith of CAAT said “UK weapons have been used by Saudi Arabia in Yemen before, in a bombardment that resulted in civilian deaths,”
“The government must ensure that UK weapons are not contributing to the violence and that there are no UK nationals or employees of UK companies involved, including BAE employees preparing aircrafts for bombing.”
RT reports: As part of a military intervention launched last week, the Saudi government is conducting airstrikes in war-torn Yemen along with Jordan, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Qatar.
Saudi Arabia’s King Salman has reportedly set aside 100 fighter jets and 150,000 soldiers for use in the military offensive.
Saudi Arabia is estimated to be Britain’s most prolific weapons buyer. Since coming to power in 2010, the UK’s Conservative-led government has licensed in excess of £3.8 billion worth of arms to the Gulf regime, according to CAAT.
Britain sells a range of arms to the Gulf state, including the Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft. It also maintains other arms for the Saudi regime such as the F-15 combat aircraft and the Saudi Tornado
Amnesty International previously concluded it was “extremely likely” that UK-supplied Tornado fighter-bombers were used in a Saudi-led military offensive against Yemen in 2009.